ELKHORN — The Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve received a $685,000 federal grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association.
The grant will fund improvements to the Reserve’s Visitor Center, including the construction of a redesigned parking lot and walkway to improve accessibility. The new parking lot will better support traffic flow from the entrance gate and create a designated school bus drop off area.
Additionally, the Reserve will become more environmentally friendly with the inclusion of natural water catchment in landscaped bio-swales.
“The Elkhorn Slough is a hub for education and conservation,” said Congressman Jimmy Panetta, who announced the grant Tuesday. “By investing in the accessibility and safety of the reserve, NOAA encourages students, tourists and researchers to visit the Central Coast and learn about our outstanding biodiversity. This grant will help ensure that future generations can appreciate the natural beauty and value of studying and conserving these waters.”
“We are excited to receive this extra financial support from NOAA,” said Dave Feliz, Elkhorn Slough Reserve manager. “This grant dovetails with other federal and state funded projects to improve our visitor services access and facilities.”