The Campaign

 Knowland Park is a 500-acre wildland park in the Oakland hills, deeded to the city in the 1970s under the condition that it would always remain a park.

Located above the Oakland Zoo, which sits on a portion of the property, it is the largest and most pristine of Oakland’s parks, a thriving hotspot for rare native plants and wildlife. But it has never been listed on the city’s Parks website, despite repeated requests.

Thus its amazing natural resources remain relatively undiscovered by the public.

In 2011, the City approved a major “conservation” theme park expansion of the Oakland Zoo into more than 50 acres of sensitive wildlife and rare plant habitat in the undeveloped area of the park. The development would include an aerial gondola ride with 60-foot towers and a three-story ridgetop visitor center, restaurant and gift shop, all approved without a full Environmental Impact Report and over the protests of numerous environmental and citizens’ groups.

Two of these groups, the Friends of Knowland Park and the East Bay Chapter of the California Native Plant Society, have filed a lawsuit aimed at forcing the City to complete a full environmental review as required under the California Environmental Quality Act. A full EIR would require thorough consideration of other alternatives to this destructive and expensive project.

Our goals are to save the park’s precious habitat for existing wildlife and to protect the remainder of Knowland Park from further development.