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Reading the High Priority NAOS Area Maps

In order to give reviewers and applicants a broader understanding of where NAOS areas should be established in order to achieve continuity and focus on the more sensitive desert features, an environmental overlay map has been prepared -- the NAOS High Priority Area Maps .

These maps are a compilation of a number of environmental and open space features, including: the ESL landform areas, land slopes, the 50 cfs washes, desert riparian vegetation, locations of major boulder formations, scenic corridors, drainage easements, and existing NAOS and conservation easements.

The resulting composite map has four color tones that represent the value for providing NAOS areas: blue, green, yellow and red:

  1. Blue = The least sensitive areas with few environmental features.
  2. Green = Limited environmental features, but if they are surrounded by blue areas these clearly are the most sensitive features that might be found on a property.
  3. Yellow = Substantial environmental and open space features and should be included in NAOS areas wherever it is possible.
  4. Red = Very sensitive locations with a number of environmental and open space features and should be placed in NAOS area unless significant mitigating circumstances make it inpractical to do so.

It should be noted that these maps are review guides and are not mandates or exact depictions of future NAOS areas. They should be used as a basis to focus providing NAOS in areas where it has meaning and high value. They also suggest that evaluation of the site features should be made before any substantial commitments for development are made.

The gray areas on these maps are locations where there is not expected to be any future proposals for NAOS because either they will be a part of the Desert Preserve, and thereby set aside, or they are within smaller lot subdivision where the NAOS has already been established and little, if any, change can be made.