San Diego County supervisors this week approved plans for a major development surrounding a 66-year-old castle south of Ramona at the foot of Mt. Woodson.
The imposing stone mansion, which was built by the late Amy Strong, a San Diego dressmaker, will be the centerpiece of a rural subdivision featuring 189 estate homes, a 100-unit inn, equestrian center, golf course and clubhouse planned by the PRW Co.
Earlier proposals to develop the 379-acre site had been opposed by local residents and historians, who protested any plans that would change the turreted mansion. But the Castle H Ranch proposal drew criticism only from Poway city officials, who felt the development would add to traffic congestion on Poway Road.
The 27-room castle, on the National Registry of Historic Buildings, will be renovated and used as a social center for community functions. The project will also bring revenue to nearby Ramona in sales taxes and hotel-motel taxes, which will be used chiefly to support the town's historical museum.