Strategy 5B

Preserve and enhance open space, waterways, and priority ecological areas

Protected Areas are lands that are owned and protected for open space purposes by federal, state, county, and local governments and nonprofit organizations. LA County has roughly 900,000 acres of protected public lands, an area larger than the state of Rhode Island. This comprises 34% of LA County's total land area. Protected areas can support long-term conservation of habitats and species, promote soil health, and provide opportunities for outdoor recreation and ecological discovery.

With the passage of Measure A, or the Safe, Clean Neighborhood Parks and Beaches Measure of 2016, the County has begun mobilizing funds for enhancing parks, beaches, open spaces, recreational facilities, and other community amenities. Funds from Measure A are allocated to six specific funding areas that will undoubtedly bring positive improvements to the County's open and natural space. Still, it is clear that a countywide assessment of open space could provide a better understanding of the scale of available open space and help identify the need for more open space, especially in certain disadvantaged areas.

The County will lead by intensifying its efforts to observe land protections and new priority ecological sites and species, and partnering with other jurisdictions to align policies and programs affecting regional open space.


64.4% of LA County land was classified as natural area but only 34.9% of LA County land was protected as of 2018. (CalVeg; National Gap Analysis Project; California Protected Areas Database; Los Angeles County Significant Ecological Areas Program)

Increase to 55% the percentage of protected natural areas

Increase to 65% the percentage of protected natural areas

Increase to 70% the percentage of protected natural areas

Explore actions by topic tag

Explore more goals

Skip to content