North Tustin Notes
A monthly column by Scott Logue, Communications Director, Foothill Communities Association
August, 27, 2019
Locally organized efforts to protect the integrity of a fully developed neighborhood in North Tustin from infill development continued on the last Sunday of August at a “Save The Racquet Club” meeting.
Your North Tustin neighbors gathered on Sunday, August 25 to meet and discuss progress and future activities needed to prevent condensed housing from being infilled on the current site of the Tustin Hills Racquet Club (THRC).
Ever since Peter Zehnder submitted his plans to the County in December of 2018, a growing number of North Tustin neighbors have been organizing against the proposed 37 homes comprising 17 duplexes and three single residences averaging 6.29 homes per acre and 170 parking spaces.
The developer’s request to spot zone this area well within an existing and well-established neighborhood from “A1 (General Neighborhood)” to “R2 (5,000)” is another, in what appears to be a steady stream of attempts, in leveraging the local government to ignore and overrule existing and long established zoning requirements despite the desires of local homeowners that are being directly impacted.
Despite the absence of any organized neighborhood effort to support this proposal, except the developer, and a large and expanding effort to oppose it, there are no guarantees that constituents in the area will be represented based on the recent history of infill proposals that have come before local government officials.
Prodigious attendance of those constituents at the meeting held on Sunday at a neighbors house just down the street from the Tustin Hills Racquet Club, and the ever increasing numbers of supporters, are due largely to efforts of volunteers distributing 200 “Save The Racquet Club” door hangers throughout the impacted area, posts on social media, word of mouth as neighbors fulminate on this latest challenge to preserving the character of North Tustin, and email blasts from the head of the Foothill Communities Association (FCA) THRC Steering Committee, Lori Chew.
The two hour meeting highlighted the passions of the neighborhood to strategize, educate, raise funding, increase awareness and recruit volunteers for ongoing efforts. Rick Nelson, President of the Foothill Communities Association spoke at the meeting, discussing the process of opposition with the County while Melissa Falco discussed volunteering opportunities and Lori Chew elaborated on the proposed development plan.
Don Wagner, representing the 3rd District for the Orange County Board of Supervisors has expressed his support for the opposition to this development plan and has encouraged the THRC Committee to schedule and meet with the other Supervisors.
The THRC Committee and supporters are planning to address the OC Board of Supervisors during their next scheduled meeting as well as reach out to the individual members of the board to discuss their concerns. The THRC Committee will also be available to meet and greet at several upcoming events including the OC Jazz Festival (September 22, 1:00pm, at the Orange County Mining Co), Tustin Tiller Days (October 4-6, in Tustin) and Dino Dash (November 3, The Market Place). Keep an eye out for the THRC booth at these events and meet some of your hard working neighbors helping to preserve North Tustin.
Please also consider lending your support in preventing condensed infill and spot zoning not just in this neighborhood, but throughout greater North Tustin by stopping this unfortunate trend that could one day find its way to an empty lot near you. Please donate to the THRC Committee at www.fcahome.org/raise-money, a dedicated link to raise funds specifically for the THRC opposition. To sign the petition objecting to this development, please visit www.fcahome.org/racquet-club-petition, to request a lawn sign please email Melissa Falco at MelissaAFalco@gmail.com and to inquire about volunteer opportunities and other general questions, please contact Lori Chew at LoriChew98@gmail.com. To learn more, visit .SaveTheRacquetClub.com
To sign up for the Foothill Communities Association mailing list to be updated about all the issues concerning the neighborhoods of North Tustin, please visit www.fcahome.org/sign-up-for-north-tustin-update where you can also join the FCA and become a member neighbor helping neighbors.