Embattled housing project reveals more details

Embattled housing project reveals more details
Representatives from New Urban West Inc. speak with 20 to 25 residents near the site of the Escondido Country Club housing development last week about elements of the plan, including the range of homes, any assessments and other parts of the proposal. File photo

ESCONDIDO — Plans for the embattled Escondido Country Club have come to light.

On Monday, New Urban West Inc. (NWUI) released details of its project, which features 392 homes and amenities.

Representatives from New Urban West Inc. (NUWI) were invited to meet last week with 20 to 25 residents to speak about elements of the plan including the range of homes, any assessments and other parts of the proposal.

The project includes an average lot size of 4,000 square feet, while all homes would be two stories ranging from 1,800 to 2,900 square feet in three “villages.”

According to NUWI, the homes will range in price from the low $500,000s to the high $600,000s. A percentage will be targeted for senior living, although no condos or apartments will be constructed.

“Over the last several months, we have met personally with hundreds of country club residents to listen to their thoughts and ideas, their dreams and desires,” NUWI said in a statement. “Guided by their input, we have created a plan that features an expansive greenbelt and other amenities that will bring back the social fabric of the community that was once so vibrant.  What we are proposing is a financially viable plan that will help breathe new life into a community that has suffered for far too long.  Our hope is that we can move forward with continued input from the community as our collective work progresses toward an approved project.”

However, ECCHO said it is still at odds with the developer claiming NUWI is not going to “engage in discussions with the ECCHO BoD (Board of Directors) or the larger ECCHO community as was previously agreed,” according to a statement posted on Facebook.

So, the ECCHO board has scheduled a community meeting to discuss the proposal for Sept. 20.

“A lot of the community has not seen the latest proposal, but I believe the initial reaction from ECCHO supporters will be not to support NUW’s proposal,” said ECCHO President Mike Slater. “The voters in Escondido defeated a development plan by Stuck in the Rough (Proposition “H”) of approximately 400 homes by over 61 percent in November 2014. So, I can’t see any support for these many homes.”

The project, meanwhile, proposes three villages consisting of 392 homes.

Amenities include trails and restaurants open to the public along with a possible membership to access the HOA-based clubhouse. In addition, a 30-acre, four-mile greenbelt, the clubhouse, pool and gym, tennis and pickleball courts and a community farm are included in the proposal.

Current residents, meanwhile, are voicing concerns about increased traffic, water and schools.

“Our mission is to preserve the existing green belt, expand recreational opportunities for the community, and protect the values of all homes in the Country Club area,” ECCHO said in a statement posted on Facebook.

NUWI said it would not pursue assessments for existing residents as a majority of them declined a willingness to pay for the continuous maintenance. Those costs will be shuffled to the new residents.

“In the early phases of the project before the new neighborhoods are fully built out, the developer will have to pick up much of the maintenance costs if there is no help from the city,” NUWI said. “At the urging of the community, we have also begun pursuing an arrangement with the City of Escondido for the possible ownership and on-going maintenance of certain amenities.”

The ECCHO community meeting is Sept. 20 from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Life Church, 1001 W. Country Club Lane.

NUWI will also hold meetings for residents near the new villages. Residents can register at vision4ecc.com or contact Community Coordinator Linda Bailey at (760) 445-1323 or by email at lindab@nuwi.com.

For information about the plan, visit vision4ecc.com.

1 Comment
  1. John DeLong 11 months ago

    Sadly the neighborhood has become nothing but an old tired looking place with a large dust bowl being the former golf course. Traffic is horrible as people disrespect the neighborhood driving at speeds in excess of 55 mph on Country Club Lane regularly, running stop signs at La Brea and Gary Lane everyday. Continuing on this course of no development will only put the final nail in the former Escondido Country Club’s coffin. Once a beautiful neighborhood now a sad looking run down place! I as an existing owner in the Country Club fully support developing the site and I personally believe NUWI has done an outstanding job working with the residents I can’t say so much for the other group!

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