Center for Biological Diversity

Protecting endangered species and wild places through
science, policy, education, and environmental law.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 7, 2006

Contact: Adam Keats, Staff Attorney, 415-436-9682 x304

Arrowhead Springs Development Blocked:
Evidence Lacking that Golf Course Will Provide Flood Protection, Judge Rules

SAN BERNARDIN0, Calif. – A California State Court yesterday upheld a lawsuit filed by conservationists and blocked a large new development near San Bernardino from moving forward.

Judge John P. Wade of the San Bernardino Superior Court agreed with the Center for Biological Diversity when he ruled that the environmental review was insufficient for the proposed Arrowhead Springs Development. The judge specifically ruled that project documents failed to provide sufficient evidence in support of two claims made by the developer: that the project’s proposed golf course would provide flood protection and that eliminating the golf course would be infeasible.

“This project calls for the complete destruction of a beautiful, natural stream in Waterman Canyon, replacing it with a golf course, artificial water features and McMansions,” said Adam Keats, Staff Attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity. “The developer and the city added insult to injury by justifying the stream bulldozing as an economic necessity and for flood protection without providing any evidence to back up either of these ridiculous claims.

Waterman Canyon is a steep fire- and flood-prone natural canyon in the foothills of the San Bernardino Mountains. The canyon and the proposed Arrowhead Springs development are nearly surrounded by national forest, and much of the canyon is designated as critical habitat for the endangered Southwestern Willow Flycatcher.

The Center also argued that the analysis of impacts to wildlife and vegetation was insufficient, as it contained only cursory surveys and failed to even mention the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher. The court ruled that such a detailed analysis can happen at later stages in the planning process for the project.

“We were very concerned that the city was attempting a stealth approval of the golf course by burying it in other documents without any true environmental review. The judge’s ruling that our concerns for the Southwestern Willow Flycatcher can be addressed at a later date sends a strong signal to the city to stay true to its promise to conduct a detailed review in the future,” said Keats.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a non-profit conservation organization with more than 25,000 members dedicated to the protection of imperiled species and their habitat.


more press releases. . .

Go back