3. Degradation of Recreational Trails
The operation of Alternative 5 would contribute to the long-term loss or degradation of recreational trails. This alternative would introduce a new ROW across existing recreational resources, which includes the PCT, Los Angeles County trails, and other trails within Ritter Ranch. These recreation areas are characterized by open space, across which the alternative would introduce 500 kV transmission towers. The proposed towers are large structures, ranging from 113 to 178 feet in height. Given the substantial size of these towers and their industrial appearance, and the lack of any similar types of features within the affected landscape, the proposed towers would introduce prominent man-made features into the area. As it crosses the PCT, this alternative would be located approximately 0.2 miles north of the Pardee-Vincent utility corridor. As such, this portion of the PCT is already located in an area characterized by existing industrial uses. However, the Sierra Pelona Trail, the Los Angeles County trails, and other trails within Ritter Ranch are currently located in open space, areas that do not contain man-made features and are natural in appearance.
Consequently, if Alternative 5 is selected, the introduction of a new industrial land use across these recreational resources would alter their natural or scenic quality, creating significant, unavoidable impacts to recreational users within Ritter Ranch (Class I).
No mitigation measures have been identified that would reduce this impact to a less-than-significant level. However, a selection of any of the other the proposed alternatives would eliminate this otherwise significant and unavoidable impact.