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SANDAG Buys 75 Acres Of Land As Open Space Habitat

The San Diego Association of Governments today announced it had acquired almost 75 acres of land in Oceanside and Otay Mesa for open-space habitat to offset the impacts of two railroad-related transportation projects.

The largest of the parcels acquired is more than 68 acres of agricultural land in Oceanside that borders state Route 76 to the north, just west of the Jeffries Ranch property that was previously acquired for open space. The $4 million acquisition would offset acreage used in double-tracking rails between San Onofre and Los Pulgas in Camp Pendleton as well as in the Santa Margarita Bridge Replacement Project, according to SANDAG.

Two smaller parcels were within City of San Diego Multiple Species Conservation Program land south of state Route 905 in Otay Mesa and totaled about 7 acres.

The properties - purchased for $273,000 - would offset the expansion of the San Ysidro Intermodal Freight Facility, SANDAG officials said.

SANDAG officials said Caltrans would oversee the management and restoration of the properties and the total cost of the acquisitions, restoration and management would be about $9.5 million.

The properties were acquired through the TransNet-funded Environmental Mitigation Program aimed to lessen the impact of transportation projects.

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