The Project


"Nature doesn't work without connection,"

Mary Ellen Hannibal, Author, The Spine of the Continent.

The Project

The wildlife crossing at Liberty Canyon is a project for the next century, and the structure will endure for decades, providing a lasting benefit to wildlife for generations to come.

Two decades of study by the National Park Service in the Los Angeles area has shown roads and development are not only proving deadly for animals trying to cross, but have also created islands of habitat that can genetically isolate all wildlife—from bobcats to birds to lizards. The species most immediately at risk, the mountain lion, could vanish from the area within our lifetime.

Of all the area roads, multiple research and planning efforts have identified the 101 Freeway as the most significant barrier to the ecological health of the region, and a probable extinction vortex. This crossing will re-connect an entire ecosystem that has long been fragmented by an almost impenetrable barrier for wildlife—the 101 Freeway. By building a wildlife crossing over the ten lanes of freeway and an access road—in the last 1,600 feet in the area that possesses protected land north and south of the 101—this project will re-establish ecological connectivity for a multitude of native plant and animal species in the Santa Monica Mountains ecosystem.

The preservation of this key wildlife linkage also spans over thirty years of protecting vital habitat by groups like the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been dedicated to acquiring and preserving thousands of acres of open space in the Santa Monica Mountains over almost half a century, and the wildlife crossing provides a critical last step in this historic effort. The project also supports both the state of California, and the Federal government’s 30 by 30 conservation initiatives.

This visionary structure will preserve biodiversity across the region by re-connecting an integral wildlife corridor, and most critically, help save a threatened local population of mountain lions from extinction. When complete, the crossing will be the largest in the world, the first of its kind in California, and will serve as a global model for urban wildlife conservation.