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Rancho Ortega Blog discusses matters of public interest in South Orange County, including the communities of San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch and Rancho Mission Viejo.

The writings of Don Juan Ortega on the Rancho Ortega Blog are the personal views of the author. This blog is not authored by nor does it have any affiliation whatsoever with any other person, place or entity using the name "Rancho Ortega" (or any similar name).

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Updating What We Know About Planning Area 2: The Village of Esencia

We have noticed a sudden, recent uptick in the number of internet searches related to Planning Area 2 of the Ranch Plan, what Rancho Mission Viejo has named the Village of Esencia.

We are also learning more about Rancho Mission Viejo’s plans for Planning Area 2 of the Ranch Plan. It is being called “Esencia” [...]

Trail Guide: Sendero Loop Trail

Recently, while Don Juan Ortega was out on one of his evening constitutionals, he happened upon a new trail marker that he hadn’t previously seen before. It seems that the trail elves at the Reserve at Rancho Mission Viejo have been busy. Two new trails have been built that now connect the Village of Sendero [...]

Proposed Modifications to the Ranch Plan’s Affordable Housing Implementation Agreement

When the Ranch Plan Development Agreement was approved in 2004, it contemplated a master development of approximately 22,682 acres with 14,000 homes and over five million square feet of retail and commercial property. As part of that Development Agreement, Rancho Mission Viejo is required to provide 60 acres of land to the County for development [...]

NYT: New Homes Once Again Getting Bigger

Here is an interesting article in the NY Times on trends in new housing construction: In Housing, Big Is Back. The article describes the return of the big, luxury home after that segment of the housing market took the biggest hit during the housing collapse. According to the article:

When it comes to new homes, [...]

Visions of South County Cityhood Dancing in our Heads

Susan Wilson is the Chairwoman of the Orange County Local Agency Formation Commission. What is LAFCO? Well, if you’ve been reading our blog, you would know that when it comes to South County local governance and cityhood, LAFCO is the most important government agency you’ve never heard of. Wilson has written a guest opinion piece, [...]

CUSD Planning for New K-8 School in Planning Area 2

The SJC Patch is reporting that Capistrano Unified is discussing initial plans to build the first school on Rancho Mission Viejo property, and that the school will likely be a K-8 facility able to hold up to 1200 students (and an additional 400 using portable classrooms). The article is here. We noticed that the Patch [...]

Sendero’s Third Rec Center: The Outpost

One might be forgiven for assuming that Sendero lay entirely west of Antonio Parkway. That’s where most of the construction has occurred and its the largest portion of Planning Area 1. But east of Antonio on Sendero Way is the Lyon townhome development and a third recreational facility, called the Outpost. Rancho Mission Viejo Company [...]

Final Tract Map for Meritage Homes in Sendero

We have reviewed the final tract map for the Meritage tract in the Village of Sendero. Sitting on a terraced hillside, these 63 lots will consist of three two-story models of large single family homes embracing the “great room” concept, with up to five bedrooms, optional casitas and up to 3,000 square feet of living [...]

Supervisors Approve $8.3 Million for Cow Camp Road Construction

Today, the Orange County Board of Supervisors earmarked $8.3 million to help fund construction of Cow Camp Road between Antonio Parkway and the proposed Tesoro Extension of the 241 toll road. Articles are available at the Register (behind the paywall) or at the Patch (free). Cow Camp will be the primary east-west arterial road through [...]

Location of Builder Tracts Within Sendero

We’ve taken a graphic showing the layout of Sendero and annotated it with the location of the various builder tracts within the village. Come to realize that the discrete sections on the graphic below (separated by the dashed lines) represent the builder tracts — giving you and idea of where the remaining builders will be [...]