The demand for campsites has been through the roof in recent years. However, this American town wants to prohibit RV and tent camping on some prime real estate in their community.
A few citizens have stepped up to create a petition and gather signatures to show the community’s disapproval.
So why all the fuss? Let’s see!
Why Are Residents Petitioning the City Council?
The residents are petitioning the city council of Morro Bay, CA to reconsider a pilot program launched in September 2020. The program allowed waterfront camping at four parking lots in the community. The residents want to maintain the town’s reputation as a quaint fishing village.
Citizens are very upset about the city council wanting to raise funds by turning one of their beloved beachfront locations into a micro-RV park.
There would only be a handful of sites at each location, but locals would lose their deeply cherished unobstructed views. They’re also very concerned about whether tourists would tolerate having to look at RVs along the beautiful ocean shore.
Is RV Camping Permitted at Morro Bay State Park?
Yes, there are 134 campsites at Morro Bay State Park, 30 providing water and electric connections. The remaining sites are rustic or dry camping sites. The campground can handle RVs up to 35 feet long. So, this might not be the campground for you if you have a larger rig.
Camping at Morro Bay State Park is a very popular way for tourists and guests to see the area. It’s conveniently located near many of the area’s attractions and walking paths, and has some of the best food the city has to offer.
Some of the best sites here even provide a view of the ocean right from your campsite. What more can you ask for?
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What Was the Pilot Program?
The Morro Bay Harbor Department got creative when they realized that the funds received for their operation were insufficient. The creativity led to the Harbor Department launching a limited pilot RV parking program that generated more than $32,000 in revenue in its first three months.
The Harbor Department staff estimated the program could generate $100,000 in revenue in the first year and $135,000 to $185,000 in future years.
They also acknowledged the potential for even more income by adding more sites. This additional income would allow the department to generate the funds needed to fund missing children’s searches and other rescue initiatives, like saving guests who fall into the water. These types of services don’t come without expenses.
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Did the Community Win the Petition?
On February 8, 2022, the City Council certified the petition results that citizens circulated. The City of Morro Bay’s March 2022 meeting agenda includes reviewing the RV camping program.
The RV camping program generated an additional $60,000 in revenue during the 2021 to 2022 fiscal year. Citizens will likely need to help the city council with a clear plan for replacing this lost revenue should they discontinue the program.
While they may have won a battle or two with getting their petition certified, the war is most definitely not over. The city council and Harbor Department are sure not to back down quite as easily as the citizens might like.
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Where Is Morro Bay?
Morro Bay is in San Luis Obispo County and is located along the famous Route 1 along California’s coast. It is one of the first small towns tourists visit when driving north along the Pacific Coast Highway.
The area is well known for the massive Morro Rock that rises out of the waters just off the coast of the Pacific Ocean. The town is approximately 30 miles north of Pismo Beach, Calif.
Where Is Tidelands Park?
Tidelands Park is a 2-acre park located in Morro Bay. Many children and families refer to the park as Pirate Park due to a pirate ship found in the sand-play area. You’ll find statues of seals, whale tails, and a crow’s nest for spotting the best play spot on the playground.
Families will love this park for not only the playground but the comfortable spots for enjoying a picnic and relaxing. If you’re visiting during the fourth of July, the park is also home to the Family Fun 4th of July Celebration.
With such a quiet and quaint atmosphere, it’s easy to see why locals want to hang on to the city’s natural charm. Residents want to protect their city and ensure that future generations experience the same beautiful views without having to look past large RVs. However, the city will need to develop a solid plan for generating revenue. The RV park has shown tremendous success. However, that would cause locals to sacrifice a large part of what drew them to the area in the first place.
Are you interested in staying at the new campsites in Morro Bay? Tell us in the comments!
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