What's a Change-In-Use (CIU)?

California State Parks has developed a procedure for evaluating public requests for a change-in-use of roads and trails.  A change-in-use is the addition or removal of designated uses (e.g. hiking, biking, or equestrian) from a trail. 

What's the CIU Process?

A CIU request can be submitted by State Parks staff, a user group, neighboring agency, or other organization or individual.  The District Superintendent will then assign a team of recreation, resource, and public safety specialists to evaluate the request.  The physical layout of the trail is evaluated for its ability to sustain the proposed activity; natural and cultural resources along the trail are investigated; and safety concerns are considered.  Once the team completes a seven point evaluation, it makes a recommendation to the District Superintendent.  The District Superintendent may also seek input from stakeholders and user groups or hold a public meeting to hear comments and concerns from the public.  Typically, when a CIU request is approved, the approval requires trail modifications designed to ensure the sustainability of the trail and the safety of trail users.  These modifications must be implemented prior to opening the trail to the new activity.  Additional environmental review may also be required prior to implementation.

A flow chart of the complete CIU process can be downloaded here.
A copy of the CIU seven point evaluation form is available here.

How do I request a CIU?

Requests can be submitted in writing to a park's District Superintendent.  Requests will be addressed as staffing resources permit.

Change-in-Use Programmatic EIR

The Department’s CIU process was vetted through a Programmatic Environmental Impact Report (PEIR). The purpose of the PEIR was to evaluate the environmental effects of adoption and implementation of the CIU process and was prepared pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (Public Resources Code Section 21000, et seq.). For more information, see the Programmatic EIR for the Change-in-Use process.