Nonprofit Acquires Beach Near Malibu for Nature Preserve

The transaction involved 1,300 acres

Deer Creek Beach
The Trust for Public Land has acquired 1,300 acres of oceanfront mountain land.
Carolyn Cole / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

When it comes to open spaces in the United States, there can often be a divide between the impulse to convert them into residential areas or retain them as they are, for preservation purposes. This debate has centered around spaces owned by the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, and in some cases can put two necessary issues at odds with one another. The latest permutation of this conflict recently occurred near Malibu, with the future of a stretch of beachfront land in the balance.

As Louis Sahagún reported at the Los Angeles Times, the region in question is known as Deer Creek Beach, and it encompasses 1,300 acres. The land was owned by the family of one Harry Mansdorf, who was best known as the owner of a company that transported cargo for NASA in the 1960s.

Mansdorf, the article details, had hoped to build a luxury resort on the property — though its future remained uncertain after Mansdorf died in 2012 without a will. Eventually, the Trust for Public Land purchased the land for $25 million. The next step involves making it a part of the adjacent Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area, which would put it under the control of the National Parks Service.

That’s still a ways off — the article cites experts who say that that process could take up to two years. But it also means that a piece of undeveloped land can remain preserved for future generations. Assuming, at least, that climate change doesn’t further complicate matters.

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