Saturday, May 26, 2012

New South County Community

For those of you that have traveled along the Orange County portion of Ortega Highway anytime in the last couple of months to go hiking, I am sure you have seen the new construction going on in that area.  The new construction is the start of the new city of Rancho Mission Viejo.  The picture above is from an Orange County Register Article showing the layout of the new development of the last 23,000 acres of Rancho Mission Viejo.

Ultimately, what is important to us and probably most of those that read our blog is the preservation of our natural open spaces and the opportunity for outdoor recreation/hiking trails.  The current development plan appears to strike an appropriate balance between preservation and development.  17,000 acres of the last ranch lands are dedicated to preservation as open space and the actual development is supposed to be limited to roughly 6,000 acres.  For some perspective on the size of the new Rancho Mission Viejo development, the City of Mission Viejo sits on roughly 11,000 acres, Ladera Ranch sits on roughly 4,000 acres, and Rancho Santa Margarita sits on roughly 5,000 acres.  The 17,000 acres open space preserve was the result of a lawsuit settlement between environmental groups and the developer.  Hopefully, this balance of preservation will stay this way for future generations.  The Orange County Register article is worth a read and can be found Here.

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Ashley and I encourage and welcome our readers to submit comments about their experiences on the trails we have posted on our blog or about their own hiking experiences in general.