Men’s Club: May 2017 Update

The Men’s Club Cinco de Mayo+4 Party is planned for Tuesday, May 9, from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Clubhouse featuring margaritas, beer, entertainment, and lots of delicious Mexican food. Tickets are open to all, first-come, first-served, and are going faster than an ice cold margarita.
Eric Nelson, Chair of the Dana Point Planning Commission, former member of planning commissions for several cities, and current Vice President of Trumark Homes, spoke at our first April breakfast. He addressed general parking issues in Southern California with implications for the future of Dana Point. His data indicates that 50% of our parking needs come from within a ten mile radius, with the remainder from more distant visitors; therefore, parking provisions must be designed to support a large influx of visitors. Dana Point’s existing plan requires two-and-one-half spaces for 975 square feet, costing from $19K to $53K a space. The plan, developed over seven years, provides for sharing; where every parking space of a business would be open to anyone. According to Mr. Nelson’s observations in his own neighborhood, about 70% of people use their garage for purposes other than parking cars; therefore,
many cars are needlessly parked on city streets.
Can we learn from other cities? All larger cities have parking limitations and problems, and efforts to solve them employ fines, strict ordinances, community unified cooperation efforts and providing additional parking. Cities such as San Francisco are shifting from cars to public transportation more than before. The good news locally is that our trolley system will soon be expanded so that easy access, without the need of cars or parking, will be possible for our area. Using Laguna Beach as a model, Eric favored parking meters to promote fairness in parking, with monies collected available for community improvements such as safety and lighting.
Our second April speaker was Charlie Ware, Director of Government and Community Relations for Rancho Mission Viejo. He captivated us with the history of the ranch that once included 230,000 acres between modern day Oceanside and Lake Forest. The story began in the 1880s with two Irish friends in San Francisco, James Flood and Richard O’Neill. Flood, a saloon owner with investment in the Comstock silver mines, sought a way to diversify his gains by asking O’Neill to purchase land in Southern California, establishing “the greatest of all California ranchos.” Thus, based on a hand shake, the O’Neill family eventually became owner of the northern portion of the ranch and the Flood family owned the San Diego section. As WWII began, the Navy annexed much of the Ranch to create Camp Pendleton. The remaining 52,000 acres from San Onofre to Lake Forest came under Marguerite O’Neill’s stewardship and guiding motto, “Take care of the land and the land will take care of you.”
When urbanization reached this area in the 1960s, the O’Neill family formed the Mission Viejo Company to develop the present Mission Viejo, and later, Rancho Santa Margarita, Las Flores, and Ladera Ranch.
In 2004, the Rancho Mission Viejo family secured an agreement with government and conservation groups to allow development of six additional communities, reserving 75% of the remaining 23,000 acre ranch for open space. Two of these communities are currently in development on the hills east of San Juan Capistrano.
—Jerry Allen

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