El Segundo General Plan - 1992

6. Open Space and Recreation Element

Table of Contents


Summary of Existing Conditions

Goals, Objectives, and Policies

Goal OS1: Provision and Maintenance of Open Space and Recreation Facilities






The City of El Segundo is primarily an industrial and suburban residential environment with little undeveloped land. As such, the City's major open space and recreation resources are public parks and recreational facilities. There is a common community belief that these resources need to be protected, and whenever possible, created for recreation, beautification, and maintenance of the small town atmosphere and quality of life in the community.

Purpose and Authority


Section 65302(e) of the California Government Code requires the adoption of an open space element as part of the general plan. Government Code Section 65560 states that "Open Space Land" is any parcel or area of land or water which is essentially unimproved and devoted to an open space use, such as:

The preservation of natural resources

The managed production of natural resources

Active and passive outdoor recreation

Public health and safety

The City of El Segundo contains land as defined by the Government Code in three of the four open space categories.

The City has natural resources, such as beach area and an endangered species, that require preservation. City parks, parkettes, and areas designated for recreational purposes, school facilities, privately owned recreational facilities, scenic corridors, and utility easements are all land uses in El Segundo that require open space preservation for outdoor recreation. El Segundo also maintains open space for the public health, safety, and welfare in the form of storm drainage basins. The preservation of open space for the managed production of resources, such as mining or agriculture, is not an issue in El Segundo, and therefore, will not be addressed in this Element.

Open space provides visual relief from urban development, helps shape the urban form, and provides buffers between incompatible land uses. The Government Code indicates that the open space element should address the unnecessary conversion of open space land to urban uses. The element should also provide a program for the provision of open space in an orderly pattern of growth and development. Both of these issues are addressed through the implementation policies that are located at the end of this document.

The majority of El Segundo's open space resources are in the form of improved park land. Therefore, the City's parks and recreation issues will be addressed in this Element. Open space issues also overlap those of other elements, such as Land Use, for designation of open space areas; Conservation, for the protection of natural resources; and Safety, for the protection of the public health and safety. Therefore, related discussions can be found in such elements, and the information contained in them is consistent with this document. Moreover, a detailed inventory and analysis of El Segundo's existing open space and recreational resources is located in the Existing Conditions Report.



This Element contains a summary of the Existing Conditions Report. A detailed discussion regarding vacant lands, drainage basins, and regional recreational opportunities can be found in the Existing Conditions Report. This Element is concluded with the implementation program which includes a broad goal and detailed objectives and policies that will guide the City toward achievement of its open space and recreation goal.

Summary of Existing Conditions



The City of El Segundo has a wide variety of open space and recreational resources. For purposes of this Element, they will be grouped into two categories: publicly-owned resources, and privately-owned resources. See Exhibits OS-1 and OS-2. The publicly-owned resources include ten public parks, three school sites, a utility transmission corridor, a golf course and driving range, a recreation facility, and a beach area. The public facilities contribute a total of 90.47 acres of open and recreational space to the City of El Segundo. The privately-owned facilities include three parks, two utility transmission corridors, landscaping, a wildlife preserve, and three recreational facilities. The private facilities account for a total of 122.99 acres. The entire open space and recreation inventory for the City of El Segundo totals 213.46 acres. (Ord. 1209, GPA 93-1, 11/2/93; Ord. 1244, GPA 95-1, 2/6/96; Ord. 1272, GPA 97-1, 6/17/97). 


Private Facilities


It is estimated that 20 percent of the recreational facility users are non-residents. To help accommodate the demand beyond that of the residents, several large private employers, such as Chevron, Hughes, and Wyle Laboratories, have established extensive on-site parks and recreation facilities for their employees and their families. Wyle Park is open to the general public; however, due to the park's General Plan designation, Wyle Laboratories has the ability to convert the park into a parking lot if and when Wyle Laboratories needs the area for parking.

The El Segundo Parks and Recreation Commission has adopted standards in order to provide recreation facilities for the daytime employee population and to reduce the demands on public recreation facilities which are intended primarily to serve the resident population. Commercial and industrial developments that have been required to include on-site employee recreation facilities include the El Segundo Research Center, Grandway, the Continental Grand Plaza, and Xerox Centre Phase II/III.

Preservation of open space for the protection of natural resources is an issue in El Segundo which pertains to the existence of the El Segundo Blue Butterfly (Shijimiaeoides battoides allyni). This type of butterfly is on the federal endangered species list and occurs on 1.96 acres of land located next to the Chevron Refinery. The Chevron Corporation has established a preservation program to help sustain and increase the butterfly population by attempting to expand the buckwheat habitat in which it lives. (Ord. 1244, GPA 95-1, 2/6/96).

Additional private facilities include the 9.8 acres of landscaping surrounding the Chevron area, the 3.8-acre Chevron fitness center facility, the Old Town Music Hall, and the Seiko Tennis Court. The Old Town Music Hall operates as a motion picture theater which features silent films of the 1920's and classics of the 30's and 40's. The Old Town Music Hall is open to the general public. The Seiko Tennis Court is only available to Seiko employees.

Two additional utility transmission lines traverse the City. The associated right-of-way area that is located underneath the lines provides valuable scenic and recreational open space. The City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power corridor encompasses a 32-acre scenic strip area, and the 10-acre Southern California Edison utilities right-of-way is developed into a park land corridor.

Service StandardsGoal, Objectives, and Policies



The 1992 Open Space and Recreation goal, objectives, and policies are designed to prevent future loss of existing open space and recreation resources, as well as to encourage maintenance of the present trends relating to facility acquisition, development, and maintenance.

Goal OS1: Provision and Maintenance of Open

Space and Recreation Facilities



Provide and maintain high quality open space and recreational facilities that meet the needs of the existing and future residents and employees within the City of El Segundo.

Objective OS1-1

Public Facilities


Preserve existing and acquire future public park and recreation facilities which are adequate for serving the existing and future resident population.

Policy OS1-1.1

Adopt a park land standard of 5.0 acres/1,000 population which is the maximum allowable standard ratio as stated in Chapter 4, Article 3, Section 66477(b) of the Subdivision Map Act.

Policy OS1-1.2

Encourage a locational service area standard of one-quarter mile for neighborhood parks and one-half mile for community parks.

Policy OS1-1.3

Adopt and implement a Quimby Act Dedication Ordinance and a Zoning Amendment requiring new residential subdivisions and multi-family residential projects to include land dedication or in-lieu fee payments for active and passive public open space facilities to serve the additional growth.

Policy OS1-1.4

Continue to work with the El Segundo Unified School District in the utilization of school property for public open space and recreational use by maintaining and renewing the effective Joint Powers Agreement between the City and the School District.

Policy OS1-1.5

Conduct a park user study for all public park facilities in order to obtain the necessary data to make findings for the adoption and collection of park impact fees. Collect park impact fees for all new development projects, residential and non-residential, for open space acquisition, maintenance, and improvement.

Policy OS1-1.6

Pursue a feasibility analysis of all drainage basins, as they become available, for future use of the sites as local park land. Adopt a Zoning Amendment to add all city-owned drainage basins to the Open Space Zone.

Policy OS1-1.7

Conduct an inventory and analysis of vacant parcels, which includes a list of the assessor's parcel numbers and acreages, to identify potential park development sites.

Policy OS1-1.8

Prohibit all existing publicly-owned park land that is open to the general public from conversion to other land uses.

Policy OS1-1.9

Pursue development of alternative funding mechanisms for facility maintenance purposes such as formation of a landscape and lighting district.

Policy OS1-1.10

Support and encourage the operation, upkeep and public use of the existing public golf course and driving range facility. (Ord. 1272, GPA 97-1, 6/17/97).


Private Facilities

Objective OS1-3

Recreation Programs


Provide recreational programs and facilities for all segments of the community.

Policy OS1-3.1

Continue use of the Joslyn Adult Center, the George E. Gordon Clubhouse, and the Teen Center facilities, for recreational activities that are provided by the City's Recreation and Parks Department.

Policy OS1-3.2

Continue to fund recreational programs and advertise them on a citywide basis and in local periodicals.

Policy OS1-3.3

Encourage multi-family residential developments to provide active open space and recreation facilities which are maintained by homeowners associations.Policy OS1-3.4

Encourage commercial recreational uses to locate in El Segundo.

Objective OS1-4

Utility Corridors


Develop utility transmission corridors for active or passive open space and recreational use.

Policy OS1-4.1

Work with the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power and Southern California Edison to maintain and protect existing linear parks and landscaped areas within the utility rights-of-way.

Policy OS1-4.2

Continue to expand landscaping and recreational use along the Southern California Edison right-of-way where feasible.

Objective OS1-5

Natural Resources


Protect natural open space resources and associated habitat.

Policy OS1-5.1

Encourage the development of the natural dune habitat in the City of Los Angeles Department of Water and Power area in a manner that would be compatible with protection of its natural environment.

Policy OS1-5.2

Promote street trees and landscaping as a desirable feature of the quality of life in El Segundo, by including in the City's Zoning Ordinance a requirement for a minimum amount of landscaping for all multi-family residential, commercial, and industrial development projects.

Policy OS1-5.3

Continue to support programs for the protection of the El Segundo Blue Butterfly.

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