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“Safe Trestles”: Coalition Launches Two-Stage Design Competition to Create Low-Impact Access to Trestles

| posted on March 09, 2010

Access to Trestles, one of North America’s most celebrated waves, is under threat due to safety and environmental concerns. Currently, over 100,000 people each year follow informal trails through marshlands and over active train tracks to gain access to the surf breaks at Trestles. These impromptu manmade paths present a safety hazard with passing trains and threaten the fragile ecosystem of Trestles.

In response, a coalition of concerned groups organized by the volunteer non-profit organization Architecture for Humanity, are launching “Safe Trestles,” an open-to-all, two-stage design competition to create a safe pathway to serve surfers, the local coastal community and day visitors to San Onofre State Beach. This coalition is looking for cohesive designs that eliminate the danger of crossing active train tracks, help to restore marshlands that have been damaged by the present path, preserve and improve vistas, and offer education about the history of the site and the beach marsh environment. The new path should ensure continued access to the resources by all members of our community and adhere to Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards.

Steve Long, senior adviser to the San Onofre Foundation-a coalition partner-and retired state park superintendent stated: ” The San Onofre Foundation exists to provide the community of park supporters with a direct voice in developing a vision for the future of San Onofre and Trestles. We encourage the public to participate in this conceptual design process, offering their ideas for appropriate low-impact trail improvements and at-grade or sub-grade rail-crossing designs that will assure safe coastal access to Trestles for the generations to come. We salute Architecture for Humanity for recognizing the need and for creating this forum which will no doubt lead to inspired solutions.”

Cameron Sinclair, executive director and co-founder of Architecture for Humanity said, “We are calling upon the creative world to define a vision of safe and secure access to Trestles. By highlighting pragmatic solutions, we can allow open access for California’s coastal community and set a model for environmentally sound access to our waters.”

About The Competition

While Architecture for Humanity is placing no limitations on the originality or imaginativeness of design ideas, we are looking for tangible low-impact solutions that can actually be built at a future date. Ideally, the winning entry will be sensitive to the remote and undisturbed nature of the area-providing safe access without compromising the pristine environment and views of this rare example of natural Southern California coast. Our stage-one jury will select finalists, and we will award prizes for Most Innovative, Most Environmentally Sensitive, and Best Educational Component. This stage-one jury will take place during the Nike 6.0 Lowers Pro at Trestles in April, and People’s Choice Awards for amateur and professional teams will also be presented then.

Stage-two finalists will receive $2,000 stipends to work with local stakeholders to develop their ideas before submitting revised designs for a final jury that will take place during the Hurley Pro at Lower Trestles surfing event in September. The winning design will require further review and collaboration with the local community, Navy, Marines, transit district, and local and state agencies. It is our hope that the selected plan will provide a vision for the future of Trestles.

The $20 entry fee will contribute to ongoing efforts to raise awareness around access to Trestles by Surfrider Foundation, San Onofre Foundation and Architecture for Humanity.

Resulting entries will be available and accessible to all on the Open Architecture Network. For more information or to register, please visit: http://www.openarchitecturenetwork.org/trestles

Competition Partners:

Architecture For Humanity is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that seeks architectural solutions to humanitarian crisis and brings design services to communities in need.

Rebuild is the San Diego chapter of Architecture for Humanity, providing solutions to problems that face communities on a local and global level.

San Onofre Foundation is a charitable organization whose mission is to provide education, protection, and preservation for the California State Parks at San Onofre and San Clemente State Beaches.

The Surfrider Foundation is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the world’s oceans, waves and beaches for all people, through conservation, activism, research and education.
Competition Sponsors:

Nike 6.0
Nike 6.0 defines innovation and embodies the creativity of youth, united by action. Nike 6.0 delivers footwear and apparel to support the new generation of action sports athletes who are changing the worlds of surf, snow, ski, BMX, wake and moto. Their unlimited potential and contagious energy deliver the future through performance and lifestyle.