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SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO | Community News Focus

Council Rejects Driving Range Lights


A proposal to install night lighting at the San Juan Hills Driving Range was defeated by the City Council this week, a popular decision among residents who said they feared that the illumination would change the small-town character of the city.

In January, the Planning Commission had turned down a request by Rick Parillo, director of the driving range, to install four 60-foot-tall light poles and seven ground-mounted lights.

Parillo appealed to the council, which on Tuesday, after hearing comments from a number of residents who opposed the plan, upheld the denial.

"I think the Planning Commission made the right decision," Councilwoman Carolyn Nash said, adding that the glare from the lights might hurt property values in nearby neighborhoods.

Resident Donald Landis summed up the view of a number of his neighbors, saying: "I feel that this is the beginning of a creeping change that will destroy our community."

Parillo disagreed, saying that the lights would be on until 8 p.m. during the winter months only, allowing people who work all day to use the driving range at night.

"We are trying to provide something at the golf course for them," Parillo said.

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