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Latest update: 11 JUNE 2013


The activities listed below are presented solely for the information and convenience of our members and their listing here does not constitute an endorsement by Los Californianos.

This section will be devoted to alerting viewers to heritage preservation needs calling for letter and/or phone support.


ALERT 11 JUNE 2013:

Preservation update: Buena Vista Valley, San Diego County


Diane Nygaard, President of Preserve Calavera, wrote on May 2, “The Carlsbad City Council

approved all 656 units for the Quarry Creek project and only removed only about 1/3 of the

development off the ‘panhandle’. The following day the Oceanside City Council, on a 3:2 vote, decided

to take no further action. Their original position was for some roadway mitigation in Oceanside, a

reduced number of units, and a road connection to Carlsbad, but in the end they accepted that only 1 of 8

traffic failures would be fixed and no reduction in units or road connection to Carlsbad would be


On May 10 (received May 10, just before this newsletter was sent) she wrote: “Our legal challenges

over the Quarry Creek project were initiated this week. First on Monday with a charge the city violated the

Brown Act (open meetings law). See UT story here: http://www.utsandiego.com/news/local-topics/politics/

...The city has 30 days to respond.”

“...The major challenge is over approval of the EIR and the project. This was filed yesterday. The

challenge cited eight causes for action with numerous specific instances under each for procedural errors,

failure to adequately consider environmental impacts, to provide adequate mitigation or to provide adequate

findings to support their conclusions and the use of overriding considerations. ”

Preserve Calavera, focused on North San Diego County coastal preservation, is the lead organization

in this battle. For more background and to donate to the good guys, go to http://preservecalavera.org/.

SOHO (Save Our Heritage Organization) of San Diego County is another supporter. SOHO provides

a link to further information: http://www.kpbs.org/news/2013/feb/20/quarry-creek-carlsbad-conundrum/



ALERT 11 JUNE 2013:

Preservation update: Joaquin Moraga Adobe, Orinda, Contra Costa County

The Joaquin Moraga adobe, built in 1848, is the oldest building in Contra Costa County. Two groups

have opposed the J&J Ranch development that threatened the adobe. The land on the twenty acre site

was considered unbuildable in earlier applications but this developer has the support of the City of

Orinda’s Planning department. Preserve Adobe Lane (PAL) is a neighborhood organization that remains

opposed to the development. The Friends of the Joaquin Moraga Adobe (FJMA), a 501 (c) (3) non-profit

corporation, has negotiated with the developer to purchase the adobe surrounded by 2.3 acres including

the crucial down hill view. FJMA has made a down payment of $10,000 on the property with $50,000

required in the next 3 years. Contributions to FJMA’s efforts should be sent to: FJMA, PO Box 872,

Orinda, CA 94563


ALERT 22 MARCH 2013:


NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN to you, because your interest may be affected, that the City Council of the City of Carlsbad will hold a public hearing at the Council Chambers, 1200 Carlsbad Village Drive, Carlsbad, California, at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26, to consider certification of an Environmental Impact Report, including the approval of Candidate Findings of Fact, a Statement of Overriding Considerations, and a Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program; and approval of General Plan Land Use, Circulation and Open Space and Conservation Element Amendments, Zone Change, and Master Plan on property generally located at south of Haymar Drive and west of College Boulevard in the northeast quadrant of the city in local facilities management zone 25.

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN to you, because your interest may be affected, that the City Council of the City of Carlsbad will hold a public hearing at the Council Chambers, 1200 Carlsbad Village Drive, Carlsbad, California, at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26, to consider an appeal of Vesting Carlsbad Tract Map Number 11-04 on property generally located south of Haymar Drive and west of College Boulevard in the northeast quadrant of the city in Local Facilities Management Zone 25.

CASE FILE:                EIR 11-02/GPA 11-09/ZC 11-04/MP 10-01/LFMP 87-25           


Sincerely, Van Lynch, Senior Planner, 1635 Faraday Av, Carlsbad CA 92008, T (760) 602-4613, van.lynch@carlsbadca.gov, www.carlsbadca.gov




Save the Buena Vista Creek Valley, Home of the Marron Adobe


Through all of our efforts these last few years we have saved the sacred El Salto Waterfall in the beautiful, wild Buena Vista Creek Valley (see photos, below) — but what will surround it? 

Our priority focus right now remains the Buena Vista Creek Valley.  The McMillin Company proposes 656 homes on the eastern half of the valley.                      

This area was listed as the number one site to preserve on the city of Carlsbad’s Open Space report.

What can you do:

1) Call or e-mail the Carlsbad Mayor and City Council at (760) 434-2830 or council@carlsbadca.gov. (Letters from historical organizations, or other community groups, are especially needed.) 

2) Attend a City Council hearing or meeting (call the city phone number, above, for details).      

3) Everyone is invited to enjoy our SPECIAL EVENT on Saturday, November 10, 2012.  (Please see the Los Californianos Calendar on this website)

4)  If you can't attend on Nov. 10, please get a group of folks to join us for a private tour of the valley.   



    Shelley H. Caron

To reply to this plea, and/or to set-up a special tour, contact Shelley Caron at her E-mail Address: adobegal@sbcglobal.net



1 May 2011

Hello All:

Just as we have watched Boyd and others pour their life energy into a seemingly insurmountable fight over the Presidio, it looks like it's my (and perhaps your) turn.
The Moraga Adobe and surrounding 20 acres, which has stood as a discrete piece of property since the last of my Moraga family were forced out in 1885, has quietly been sold to developers who propose building 16 homes to encircle it. It's been for sale for three years; I never even knew about it.
As you may know, it was built in 1841 by Joaquin Moraga and supposed Indian laborers from the Presidio in 1841 on the grant he shared with his first cousin Juan Bernal. His son (and my GGGGrandpa  Jose de Jesus Moraga added two more rooms in 1848 and a few more were added for servants within the period of occupation by the Moragas. The Bernals constructed a place on the opposite end of the total grant.
It is the oldest intact adobe in Contra Costa, I believe, (the Alvarado Adobe is a reconstruction) and is on the National and State Historic sites registers.
My GGGrandmother Gomecinda was born there and her "x" was on the final forced sale in 1885 to that scoundrel of all time, Horace Carpentier. At age 12, she had the distinction of being whipped with a rifle butt by an Anglo-American squatter , so badly, that the neighboring communities were outraged and she won a civil suit award, though I doubt she saw a penny of it. The Adobe is also where the family was besieged by the squatters rifleros, and a ranch  hand was shot dead at the site during the attempted forced eviction.
This is the adobe where Joseph Lamson, who squatted in the nearby redwoods (that Joaquin basically gave up trying to protect and sold to Elam Brown), visited a fandango and left a detailed description of the evening, including physical and personal descriptions of my GGGGmother and father, Jose de Jesus and Maria de la Cruz Sibrian. My GGGrandmother was a toddler during that visit. So much has happened there, and IS documented. It's a truly valuable site of historic relevance to the period and beyond.
The adobe is in incredibly good condition compared to many missions and other sites, mostly because it was sheathed in wood, some   inside and all out. An outside staircase leads to attic and you can see the adobe walls and the original roofing brackets, and hand  cut wooden pegs that hold them in place. There is some cracking, and some ground collapse near the front door, but this has been an historic problem since a basement was excavated nearby to keep milk cool when it was operated as a dairy, ironically, by my GGGrandfather John Avila's family (he married Gomecinda). It currently has a shake roof, rather than tile.
The  house was basically saved and turned into an estate by the SoCal Irvine family. I always thought the place was safe as an estate, but I was wrong.
The adobe has a beautiful, nay commanding view of the valley. The surrouding 20 acres, thought mostly hilly, afford a glimpse of a working ranch and garden site. There is a golf course above, houses to the north, and the bulk of the open space is to the south, leading downhill toward Miramonte High School.
Behind the house is a courtyard or perhaps garden area of later times, build of adobe bricks but using concrete mortar. It's somewhat intact but the developer intends to demolish  it (pending historical review), as well as  a nearby barn that is 20th century vintage.
It is an ideal site for small events, living history, community garden, dog walks, nature walks, art exhibits, etc. It would be perfect for 4th grade history events, even overnighters, like the Petaluma Adobe. It's similar in situation as the Alviso Adobe but not quite as encircled by housing. The ad hoc group liked the idea of the field trip usage because it's during the week, rather than all weekend usage, but there is room for everything.
Nothing has been decided. A group of concerned locals, the Friends of the Moraga Adobe (which met last night), has quickly formed to try and get some kind of input going during the process. The site has yet to have a historic evaluation, but I am concerned about the integrity of the process because the developers represent big bucks no doubt. The fact that they even think they can do this to such a historic site is really troubling. A similar proposal was shot down in the 1970s. Because of the ancient spring nearby that caused the family to even construct the adobe there, there is a deep and similarly ancient landslide zone, apparently 90 feet deep underfoot, according to a neighbor who attended the meeting.
For the first time in my life, I was allowed to visit the Adobe last Thursday (with the group and the developer). Teenagers had broken through the windows and partied there, including spray painting grafitti on a few of the inside walls. The developer, seeking to protect it, put plywood over all the windows, which was promptly covered by new grafitti demanding access to the place by the cheeky juveniles! The house was dank and smelled of rats, in fact , a dead rat was in the bathtub.
Personally, I was so distressed by the sight I could barely contain my anger and sadness. I always thought I'd never see it. Instead, I saw what was presented SOMEWHAT as a rotting corpse of a house, that actually is in good condition if you strip away the added materials of the last 124 years. . Not only has the place been vandalized, but when I questioned the developer of his plans, I saw little inkling of respect for the integrity of the site beyond the single building itself. He was a friendly and accomodating man, but I don't think history is on his mind. I asked his where the nearest homes would be, and you could toss a softball and hit them from the front porch.
Any support, inquiries, etc. that you wish to offer at this time may be directed to the President of the Friends of the Moraga Adobe, Kent Long 
at kentlong@moragaadobe.org
It is early in the process and Kent can't provide a detailed action plan, but I will keep you posted. At this time, the group is pursuing definitive info about the title and ownership. Of course, we are trying to figure out a pathway of preservation, via city, county, regional or other jurisdictional possession. this letter is just a part of the effort. Please forward this to others in LC; as you know we don't have a group email capacity until it has gone through procedural review, which is fine with me.
As there is an ancient spring, it's likely that there were animals and hunters at the site. And because there were Indian servants on the premises, it's likely that there is a burial spot somewhere on the property. Most of the Moraga family, including my direct kin, are buried over the hill at St. Mary's Cemetery in Oakland. I can't believe that there isn't archaelogical heritage involved beyond the obvious.
Primo Lance Beeson


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