SEE IT: First new state park campground on California coast in 30 years to open in 2022

California

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The first new state park campground on the California coast in 30 years is expected to feature ocean frontage on Monterey Bay when it opens in 2022.

Fort Ord Dunes State Park has 4 miles of ocean beach on the bay and is located near Marina, south of Moss Landing and north of Monterey.

A new park entry sign will anchor the park’s entrance experience and help direct traffic through the improved park interior road system. / California State Parks

A former military unit, Fort Ord Dunes opened 10 years ago with little supporting infrastructure and is one of a handful of state parks providing free parking and access.

An accessible trail system throughout the campground will provide opportunities for visitor education and interpretation of the natural and cultural resources present throughout Ft Ord Dunes. / California State Parks

The area is sometimes overlooked because unlike most state parks along the Pacific Coast Highway, Fort Ord Dunes does not have a direct turnoff to parking from Highway 1.

The new campfire center will be located adjacent to Bunker 8. / California State Parks

The campground’s plan places the new campground site at a spot called Bunker 4 that is designed with three separate units, a California State Parks official said.

An interpretive display will be developed inside Bunker 12 and interpretive features will be placed around its exterior. / California State Parks

Typical traditional campsite in the new campground loop in the area of Bunker 4. / California State Parks

The plan proposes a unit with 45 recreational vehicle sites, including drive-through sites with hookups for electricity and water.

Another unit is designed for family camping, with 40 sites for tents and small, self-contained RVs.

The new community building will feature an outdoor gathering area for park visitors. / California State Parks

A third area will have walk-in sites for backpack-style campers and be available for cyclists.

The Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail will be maintained as a Class I Bike path and the plans for the campground are consistent with the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail Network Final Master Plan. / California State Parks

A boardwalk has been planned to allow access to the beach without damage crossing sensitive dunes.

The Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail will be maintained as a Class I Bike path and the plans for the campground are consistent with the Monterey Bay Sanctuary Scenic Trail Network Final Master Plan. / California State Parks

Two overlook areas are expected to provide views of Monterey Bay, historic Fort Ord and oceanfront cities Sand City, Seaside and Monterey.

The Guard Tower Overlook is one of 2 overlooks to be constructed as part of the project. / California State Parks

“This landscape provides some of the best views of coastal dunes anywhere in the state,” said Brent Marshall, district superintendent for state parks. “Many Californians lack access to parks, open spaces and natural and cultural amenities. Creating a new campground will help make these dynamic sand dunes accessible to all.”

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