City councilors discussed transforming Ragged Mountain Natural Area into a shared space on Tuesday, proposing to allow mountain biking within its boundaries.
The Natural Area currently allows visitors to walk the five miles of trails that border the Ragged Mountain Reservoir. In order to preserve the wildlife and land of the Natural Area, the City of Charlottesville Parks and Recreation Department prohibits dogs, bikes, vehicles, jogging, camping, fires, and hunting.
Councilors are deciding whether to allow hiking, biking, and dogs on the trails.
Some members of the public are concerned that the area could lose its peaceful setting with bike traffic. They fear that cyclers will damage the environment by contributing to erosion.
The Council completed the first of two readings designated to potentially reforming Ragged Mountain’s purpose. The second reading is set to take place on December 19th. Councilors will officially vote on whether or not to accept the proposed changes to the area.
Ragged Mountain is open free to the public everyday from 7:00 am to dusk.