Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area: Protected, forever.
The American business tycoon, Howard Robard Hughes Jr. privately purchased 30,000 acres of land west of Las Vegas, that is now Summerlin, in 1952. In the early 1980s, Summa Corporation (predecessor to The Howard Hughes Corporation) realized the development potential of the land. The community was named Summerlin for Hughes’ paternal grandmother, Jean Amelia Summerlin.
As the decades unfolded and the master planned community of Summerlin evolved many steps were forged to protect the acres of natural beauty on the far west lands of the development which is now Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area.
In 1988, The Howard Hughes Corporation (Hughes) gave up more than 5,000 acres in a land exchange with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to create a buffer zone that forever protects Red Rock Canyon and the scenic loop road experience. In 2001, HHC donated $30,000 to the BLM for new trail marker signage throughout the Conservation Area.
In 2002, Hughes enacted a second federal land exchange with the BLM. This exchange preserved an additional 1,100 acres along Summerlin’s western border, adding it into the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area to maintain the view-shed and protect the lower slopes of the mountains from development.
Additionally, Hughes has long worked with federal and state governments, as well as Las Vegas Paiute tribal leaders and the archaeological community, to protect historic American Indian rock art etched into the Little Red Rocks area in the far western region of Summerlin. Hughes is currently working with the appropriate parties to create an anticipated permanent preserve around the Little Red Rocks area and an interpretive trail system that will tell the story of our valley’s original residents, the Las Vegas Paiutes, preserving their legacy for many decades to come.