Merced Wild and Scenic River Final Comprehensive Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement
Public involvement has been a cornerstone of the planning process. Throughout plan development, the park conducted over 60 public meetings. The NPS received over 30,000 comments on the draft plan. Many of the changes between the draft and final plan are a direct result of concerns raised during public meetings, agency and tribal consultation, and in public comments.
The Final Merced River Plan/EIS presents and analyzes six alternatives, a no action alternative (Alternative 1) and five action alternatives (Alternatives 2-6). Alternative 1 (No Action) represents continued current management and trends. The action alternatives vary primarily based on the objectives for ecological restoration and visitor experience.
The final preferred alternative (Alternative 5: Enhanced Visitor Experience and Essential Riverbank Restoration) is based on guiding principles that include restoring natural conditions to riparian areas, riverbanks and meadows, modifying the transportation system to provide a better visitor experience in Yosemite Valley, enhancing recreational opportunities, and reducing or eliminating unnecessary facilities and services in the river corridor.
Under Alternative 5, visitors to Yosemite Valley will see marked improvements in the transportation system, including more efficient parking and traffic flow. Coupled with extensive riverbank and meadow restoration, the visitor experience will be significantly improved. Visitors to Yosemite Village will experience an enhanced sense of arrival to the heart of Yosemite Valley.
Links to download the Final Merced River Plan/EIS are provided below. Volume 1 contains Chapters 1-8, the framework for the comprehensive management plan and the range of alternatives. Volume 2 contains Chapters 9-13, the analysis of impacts associated with each alternative and information about consultation efforts. Volume 3 contains Appendices A-T, which provide additional detail and analyses for the plan.