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El Morro Village

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NEWS
January 12, 2003
There are compelling reasons for Gov. Gray Davis to ask the state parks department to revise its plan to eliminate El Morro Village within Crystal Cove State Park by the end of 2004. The projected state budget deficit is staggering. Each department must do everything reasonable to raise revenue and cut costs. There is a huge shortage of housing in Orange County. If the state parks department continues with its plan it will destroy nearly 300 small- and medium-size residences and eliminate $1.2 million or more in annual revenue generated by El Morro Village rents.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 12, 2009 | Susannah Rosenblatt
The Caterpillar front-loader sits parked in the dirt, empty, next to small mountains of untouched crushed asphalt. Across Pacific Coast Highway at the edge of Laguna Beach, glassy green-blue waves slide onto the sand next to a chain-link fence and orange plastic webbing. Work has stopped on the long-planned transformation of the former El Morro Village mobile home neighborhood into a beachfront state park with priceless ocean views. Like thousands of other state-funded projects, workers were called off the job and plans frozen as the governor and Legislature struggle to resolve the budget mess.
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NEWS
June 30, 2002
Re "All Trailer Parks Are Not Created Equal," Letters, June 9: Elisabeth Brown, president of Laguna Greenbelt Inc., states that "El Morro Canyon will be returning to public use after Jan 1, 2005." She should know that El Morro Canyon has been open for public use for a long time. El Morro Canyon consists of 2,200 acres with 18 miles of hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails. There are 32 campsites in three campgrounds and public parking near the ranger station. El Morro Village does not restrict public use of the canyon or the beach area.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 25, 2008 | Susannah Rosenblatt, Times Staff Writer
All that's left of the 295 seaside trailers just north of Laguna Beach, once festooned with flowerpots and tidy patios, are some crumbling concrete slabs. And memories. Dump trucks and earthmovers are scraping across 35 acres of canyon and beach, transforming the funky little enclave that was El Morro Village into Southern California's first coastal campground in two decades. State parks officials and environmentalists trumpet the $12-million construction project, which began last month, as a victory for public access and the preservation of pristine Orange County coastline.
OPINION
March 12, 2005
As a California taxpayer, I have no problem subsidizing the rent for the park employees at the Crystal Cove cottages (March 4). What I do have a problem with is the years and years of subsidizing those who live in the El Morro Village mobile home park. First, Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R-Irvine) suggests that park employees' rents be based on their location assignment. Does this mean that the rangers with the more desirable locations receive more salary that could possibly justify this sliding scale of rent?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 25, 2008 | Susannah Rosenblatt, Times Staff Writer
All that's left of the 295 seaside trailers just north of Laguna Beach, once festooned with flowerpots and tidy patios, are some crumbling concrete slabs. And memories. Dump trucks and earthmovers are scraping across 35 acres of canyon and beach, transforming the funky little enclave that was El Morro Village into Southern California's first coastal campground in two decades. State parks officials and environmentalists trumpet the $12-million construction project, which began last month, as a victory for public access and the preservation of pristine Orange County coastline.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 20, 2001
Re "Life at the Beach Available for a Song--With One Catch," May 13: Common sense indicates that the existing mobile home park and the state park's plan to provide RV and camping units in the area can co-exist very well. RV and camping space is available above the El Morro Village terrace area, and the state parks system can continue to benefit from the $1.2 million or more annual profits from El Morro Village rents. Public access is not an issue. The public already has full access to the beach area with OCTA bus stops on both sides of Pacific Coast Highway at the El Morro entrances.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 18, 2001
Re "Save Crystal Cove's Great Cultural Resource," letters, Nov. 11: Val Carson's letter refers to Crystal Cove's great resource (its cottages). Wrong. It's our beaches. The cottages are nothing more than vermin- and insect-infested dumps. Worse, they are responsible for decades of ocean pollution. They should immediately be demolished. Instead, the state in its wisdom will spend hundreds of thousands in tax money to restore the cottages so a few privileged can enjoy our beaches, because they can afford it. Wrong again.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 21, 2002
Assemblyman John Campbell (R-Irvine) introduced a bill Wednesday that would extend private leases on state-owned oceanfront property to fund restoration of the historic district. Leases for the 294 tenants of El Morro Village mobile home park expire in 2004. Campbell's bill would extend them for five years and raise rents to market value. That could bring in as much as $10 million to help pay for the state's $15-million restoration of the 1920s-era beach colony, Campbell said.
OPINION
November 3, 2002
Re "El Morro Should Go Public," Oct. 20: The Times characterizes the El Morro Village petition challenging the certification of the environmental impact report as self-serving and without merit. On the contrary, existing state law requires -- and the public deserves -- a comprehensive plan for Crystal Cove State Park. This is precisely what our petition seeks: a comprehensive plan. Thus far, the state Parks Department has irresponsibly moved forward with piecemeal environmental planning.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 2, 2006 | Jonathan Abrams And David Reyes, Times Staff Writers
By day's end Wednesday, there was little left at the El Morro Village mobile home park besides vacant trailers and makeshift memorials of sprawled lawn chairs and sun umbrellas. But on a bluff overlooking the Pacific Ocean, about 50 of the last tenants stood together. They cheered, wiped away tears and raised their glasses to the setting sun.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 27, 2006 | David Reyes, Times Staff Writer
Rolly Pulaski plans to take in one long, last view of the Pacific on Tuesday as he and his neighbors prepare to leave El Morro Village beachfront mobile home park. "Come by on the 28th; we'll be saying goodbye to the last sunset," said Pulaski, who fondly recalled many a late afternoon sitting on his hilltop terrace with his wife, Madine, who died last year. "From our favorite alcove we saw whales, hawks flying by, even a bobcat once."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 23, 2005 | Seema Mehta, Times Staff Writer
The Stevens family, whose house was lost in the Laguna Beach landslide on June 1, finally has a place to call home. After months of shuttling between friends' homes, the family made its 10th move Saturday, into a freshly painted, tan mobile home in Laguna Canyon. "It's going to be great here," said Diane Stevens, 49, a marketer with the Irvine Co. "You can't ask for anything more when you're in our situation. It has been an emotional roller coaster.
OPINION
March 12, 2005
As a California taxpayer, I have no problem subsidizing the rent for the park employees at the Crystal Cove cottages (March 4). What I do have a problem with is the years and years of subsidizing those who live in the El Morro Village mobile home park. First, Assemblyman Chuck DeVore (R-Irvine) suggests that park employees' rents be based on their location assignment. Does this mean that the rangers with the more desirable locations receive more salary that could possibly justify this sliding scale of rent?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 24, 2005 | David Reyes, Times Staff Writer
From her living room window overlooking the Pacific Ocean, Naia Stevens has a panoramic view to fight for. And that's what she's been doing, to protect her home from state officials who went to court last week to evict her and other residents of El Morro Village. Thus opens the next -- and maybe last -- chapter in the legal tug of war between the state Department of Parks and Recreation and the residents of the 75-year-old, 295-space mobile home park between Laguna Beach and Corona del Mar.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 7, 2004 | Kimi Yoshino, Times Staff Writer
Longtime residents of El Morro Village, the coastal mobile home park scheduled to be converted into a public campground soon, have filed two lawsuits seeking to block their Dec. 31 eviction from Crystal Cove State Park. State park officials say the lawsuits are the only obstacles to providing full public access to the El Morro site, 32 prime acres on the beach and along the edge of El Moro Canyon across Coast Highway.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 24, 2003 | Stanley Allison, Times Staff Writer
Facing eviction by the end of 2004, mobile home residents on the prime coastal real estate of Crystal Cove State Park floated a plan Thursday that would let them keep most of their trailers an additional 30 years. The proposal by El Morro Village residents, which would include building 50 affordable apartments in the area south of Corona del Mar and possibly generate park restoration funds, was immediately denounced by parks officials and Orange County environmentalists.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 13, 2003 | Stanley Allison, Times Staff Writer
In a bid to stay in their seaside trailer park another 30 years, residents of El Morro Village are waging a well-financed campaign created by consultants that includes full-page ads, a lawsuit and a plan to forestall its conversion into a campground in Crystal Cove State Park.
OPINION
February 2, 2003
Re "El Morro Residents Labor to Stay Put," Jan. 24: If the residents who live in the El Morro Village mobile home park at Crystal Cove State Park really want to do something for the affordable-housing market, how about moving out now? This would give those of us who can't afford the upscale hotels being built along our coast a place to camp per the 1982 general plan for that area. It is outrageous that these same residents would even think of asking for a 30-year extension on their leases.
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