Future home of . . . future home of . . . future home of. . . . The words repeat in an almost rhythmic refrain on signs in front of the huge construction sites lining Alton Parkway. The signs herald the arrival of yet more major companies to East Irvine. The world headquarters of Western Digital and the Orange County division of AT&T will soon join Kawasaki, Hewlett Packard, Mazda Motors of America and a host of other big-time corporations in the steel and glass-skinned towers. In East Irvine, the corporate welcome mat is definitely out.
Much of East Irvine--the area in the juncture of the San Diego and Santa Ana freeways and Jeffrey Road--is owned by the Irvine Co., which has developed more than 860 acres for commercial use. About 550 companies employing 15,000 workers make the area their home. With 15 million square feet of office and industrial space and plans for an additional 30 million square feet, noisy corporate neighbors aren't a problem--yet.
The Irvine Medical Center, a 250-bed hospital and research facility, will be one of the bigger new corporate kids on the block when it is completed in late 1989. In the same year, the city of Irvine will begin constructing a "multimodel station"--a transportation center featuring an Amtrak train stop, Orange County Transit District service and a park-and-ride facility.
Lofty towers housing high-profile corporations may proliferate with unseemly regularity, but there are no plans for new residential development anytime soon. A scattering of town homes, condominiums and apartments do exist, however. The campus of Irvine Valley College and a couple of small shopping centers and churches round out the roster of non-industrial buildings in the area.
Despite the overwhelming emphasis on office construction, there are still large sections of land in East Irvine that have never reverberated under the weight of a construction crane or cement mixer. The state has designated some of the land as an agricultural preserve, allowing farmers to grow asparagus, red peppers, strawberries and fruit trees for a period of time, free from encroachment by commercial development.
Population Population: (1988 est.) 1,489 1980-88 change: +37.1% Median Age: 32.5
Racial/ethnic mix: White: (non-Hispanic) 76% Hispanic: 18% Black: 1% Other: 5% MALES Median age: 32.0 years FEMALES Median age: 32.9 years
Income Per capita: $29,836 Median Household: $43,333 Average Household: $47,862
Household Distribution: Less than $25,000: 17% $25,000-49,999: 44% $50,000-74,999: 20% More than $75,000: 19%