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Neighborhood Profile: Greentree

November 23, 1989|Clipboard researched by Elene Burnet and Susan Davis Greene / Los Angles Times

Population

Total: (1989 est.) 4,129

1980-89 change: -4.9%

Median Age: 32.6

Racial/ethnic mix:

White (non-Latino), 76%; Latino, 11%;

Black, 1%; Other, 12%

Racial/ethnic mix:

White:(non-Latino) 76%

Latino: 11%

Black: 1%

Other: 12%

MALES: Median age: 32.8 years

FEMALES: Median age: 32.3 years

Income

Per capita: $16,494

Median household: $47,157

Average household: $49,033

Income Distribution:

Less than $25,000: 12%

$25,000- 49,999: 45%

$50,000- 74,999: 31%

$50,000-74,999: 31%

$75,000- $99,999: 8%

$100,000 and more: 4%

FOCUS

A Community of Parks, Playgrounds and a Pool

Each of Irvine's planned communities captures the feel of a country village without waiting several hundred years for its development. And at Greentree, the village square is a park where families come together to picnic, take leisurely strolls and play in a natural setting.

Streets in Greentree unfold from this central park, which spans almost the entire length of the neighborhood from Belvedere to Homestead streets. But few streets allow through traffic; each is a modified cul-de-sac.

The park is 7 1/2 acres of grass, trees and the occasional picnic table. It features a sand-based tot lot with swings, a curved slide and a jungle gym. A full-size basketball court plays host to neighborhood pickup games.

But the park's jewel is its swimming pool, a junior Olympic size, and accompanying 18-inch-deep wading pool for younger children. The Greentree community "has its own swim team, as do five or six other associations in Irvine," according to Phil Young, president of the Greentree Homes Assn.

The Irvine City League, in collaboration with the homeowners associations, includes swim teams from Deerfield, College Park, Heritage Park and Northwood, as well as Greentree. Each team has spaces for 100 children ages five through 18, and they have meets, sometimes as often as once a week. This year the Greentree team came in second; last year it was first.

"The two major assets (of the community) are the park and the pool," says Young, a Greentree board member for almost three years. The neighborhood has "one of the largest privately owned parks, a shopping center within walking distance, and it's close enough to the freeway. It's a wonderful community to live in."

The shopping center, Heritage Square, features the standard fare: a Ralphs, Wendy's, Sizzler, Sav-on Drugs, Miller's Outpost, Crown Hardware, Valley Federal Savings, Chevron gasoline station.

Greentree has been in existence for 17 years, according to Rob Cochrane, property administrator of the Villageway Management Co., which manages the neighborhood. It was built by Donald Bren before he bought the Irvine Co. with a group of investors in 1977. Residents began moving into the 626 two-to-four-bedroom, single-family homes early in 1972 and continued through 1977.

"Irvine was developed with the village theme," says Young. There are "lots of families with children." However, the neighborhood is "not 100% children-oriented"; there are retired people as well. "The smallest model home (two bedrooms, one bath) is a beautiful starter for younger families and retired people. It's nice for (those) age groups."

Although the neighborhood is not completely child-oriented, kids do stand to benefit from the fact that the Greentree site "was slotted for the elementary school with a greenbelt," Young continues.

The Greentree School educates children from "communities" beyond Greentree, including The Willows, Heritage Park, California Homes, Irvine Grove and Walnut Square. Children out on their lunch hour shriek and holler as they romp on the grassy lawn in front of the school.

A sign introduces Willows Park, another planned community, separated from Greentree by a retaining wall. Here there are 582 homes, in existence since 1971. The Willows also designates a grassy recreation and playground area at Ranch Grove, with lots of greenery and houses on both sides.

Across Walnut Avenue, the main thoroughfare marking one of the parameters of Greentree and the Willows communities, at Yale Avenue, is Heritage Park. The expansive playing fields, which get a steady workout from youth league contests, and tennis courts coexist side by side with the Irvine Fine Arts Center, the Irvine Regional Library, the Youth Services Center, the local fire station and the walled community of Irvine Groves.

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