Town News

Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

MROSD Seeks Partners for Historic Hawthorns Property

Post Date:03/07/2014
MROSD LogoThe Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District is poised to explore partnerships for the future rehabilitation, reuse, and maintenance of the Hawthorns Historic Complex. The Hawthorns Historic Complex is located on a portion of a 79-acre triangular piece of land located between Alpine and Los Trancos Roads in the Town of Portola Valley. The property became a part of Windy Hill Open Space Preserve in 2011, when the District acquired the property, historically known as “The Hawthorns”.  Included on the property are a house and associated buildings built between the 1880s and 1920s.

In 2013, the District hired Knapp Architects to conduct surveys and data research of the land and structures associated with the Hawthorns Historic Complex. The following two reports are now complete and include details on the findings for the site: a Historic Resource Study and a Structure Conditions Assessment. These reports are available to the public on the District website as a reference for interested persons and potential partners. Copies are also posted at the Town of Portola Valley offices for public review. For more information, visit the project page at

Time is of the essence to develop a partnership, given that the buildings continue to be exposed and impacted by the elements; therefore, by the end of March 2014, the District will release a Request for Letters of Interest (RLOI) to solicit potential partnerships and conceptual proposals for the restoration, reuse and maintenance of the Hawthorn Historic Complex. The RLOI will provide background information about the site and set parameters for potential partnerships. Letters of interest may propose reuse of all or portions of the historic complex. Only “concept-level” proposals rather than full detailed proposals will be requested at this time. Staff would then review the proposals and engage in discussions with the proposers to narrow down the list of viable partnerships.

The Request for Letters of Interest will be posted on the Hawthorns project page here: Interested parties may sign up there for email updates. Photos of the preserve are available upon request. For more information, contact Ariel Shaw, Planner I, at (650) 691-1200 or via email at

Created by voter initiative in 1972, the Midpeninsula Regional Open Space District has successfully protected more than 62,000 acres of open space. Midpen’s mission is to acquire and preserve a regional greenbelt of open space and agricultural land of regional significance in perpetuity, protect and restore the natural environment, and provide opportunities for ecologically-sensitive public enjoyment and education. Currently, Midpen protects 70 rare native species in 26 unique preserves with over 225 miles of publicly-accessible trails. Two million visits are made to Midpen preserves annually.

Return to full list >>