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Old 06-15-2010, 09:41 AM
 
Location: SoCal
559 posts, read 1,204,653 times
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A quick peek at the threads in this forum makes obvious that the Conejo Valley and Santa Clarita are the de facto destinations for families seeking the neighborhood trifecta of safety, good schools and "family-oriented."

But for how long? Will this still be true in 5, 10, 20 years or will there be C-D threads with titles such as "Thousand Oaks used to be great but now no one speaks English!!!" or "Santa Clarita is too crowded and the people are rude!!!" The Orange County homologue, Irvine, has maintained a stellar livability index for decades although it is now too expensive for the average middle class family.

And if, as I suspect, the quality of life in the L.A. metro region continues to improve (including LAUSD) will there be less of a draw of the exurban areas? How much more can the CV and SC be built out? Is there enough local employment (e.g. biotech corridor) to sustain growth or will they be dependent on L.A. for jobs (i.e. bummer commute notwithstanding Metrolink)?
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Old 06-15-2010, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,345 posts, read 86,680,348 times
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If those places ever fall apart, there will always be somewhere else to go. Doesn't have to be in California either. The street I grew up in Canoga Park was pretty nice in the early and mid 1960s. It started going downhill in the 1970s (probably because I lived there...). So, what did my parents do? They moved to Calabasas.

Also, there's a feedback loop which helps to sustain those communities' desirability:

They are desirable.
Desirability increases demand.
Demand increases prices
High prices filter in only those who can afford it.
Those who can afford it are usually wealthy and educated.
Communities with wealthy and educated people have an interest in maintaining the desirability.

As far as the inner cities becoming more desirable and the suburbs and exurbs falling apart, we've read stories of mcmansion ghettos due to things like expensive transportation and failed loans - though it is happening to some extent (Inland Empire falling down, Downtown LA advertising lofts and professional level housing). Businesses and their jobs relocate to suburbs too - that's often where their "human resources" are. The Conejo Valley and Irvine are huge employers as well as residential communities.

Last edited by Charles; 06-15-2010 at 10:09 AM..
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Old 06-15-2010, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Southern California
1,893 posts, read 1,895,242 times
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Well, as far as Santa Clarita is concerned, it'll depend on how our children want to live as to whether it'll be the same place they grew up. As far as I'm concerned, it's built up enough, but there are those developers who would like to build huge hotels and office buildings, which very vocal residents always fight... and I agree with them. Since there are many homeowners associations here, especially on the westside, the older neighborhoods, and I'm talking about the ones that are at least 40 years old, look as nice as the newer ones. There is also a zero tolerance for graffiti and a pride in the community that, imho, is lacking in some places of the San Fernando Valley.

As far as expansion of the city, there are a few areas where homes could be built to the north, but then there's the Angeles National Forest. A new community Newhall Ranch has been in the planning stages for years and when the recession is over, it'll probably start being built... excepted to have at least 70,000 residents... this is west of the I-5 on Highway 126.

As for jobs, well, some are high paying, those who own businesses, but the workers aren't paid the same as they are in LA. I did work there for four years and was never given a raise... so I moved on and went back to work in LA and my salary doubled in eight years... not crazy about the commute, but you do what you have to do.
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Old 06-15-2010, 03:56 PM
 
Location: South Bay
7,164 posts, read 20,087,137 times
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if either is to become 'ghetto-ized', i would say that this would happen in the SCV first. the conejo valley is still in very high demand and prices are considerably higher than the SCV. most people are priced out of the conejo valley. it takes a household income of over $150k to get into a standard house out there. with that, i can see TO and nearby communities staying in their little bubble for the foreseeable future. i'd like to think that SCV will also follow the same path, but the location isn't as good and homes are not as expensive. eventually all the of the new homes won't be new any more and people will continue living further and further from employment centers (like we've been seeing with the growth of palmdale and lancaster) to buy stucco houses that will look like #### in 10-15 years. then comes the urban infill and all of the problems that follow similar to what we've seen in the SFV over the last 20 years or so.
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:50 PM
 
Location: SoCal
559 posts, read 1,204,653 times
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I guess what prompted my thread was the combo of endless postings from people looking to move into the L.A. area but wanting affordable safety, good schools and whatever is meant by family friendly; plus the equally numerous posts about how neighborhood XYZ in L.A. used to be a perfect place to grow up in but that it's now a radioactive crater since it became crowded and the demographics shifted.

Crowding and demo-shift are things which can happen to any popular locale unless there is a very high buy-in tariff and iron-fisted planning committee. There are only so many families that can move into an uncrowded neighborhood before it turns into the very thing they were avoiding. Many of the "bad" areas of L.A., such as Compton and Valley districts were once very nice suburban communities.

Charles' positively reinforcing cycle can work but then it turns into an unaffordable area. Also, it can be broken if the area has a need for low wage workers. Are there low-wage folks who are emptying wastebaskets and washing the dishes in the back of restaurants in the Conejo Valley & Santa Clarita? Are these jobs being done by the fresh-faced kids of residents? If not, where are these workers living? Once there is a community of low-income families in proximity, it seems to spook many of the better off families. Note the number of posters who claim that even nice communities such as Beverly Hills or Palos Verdes are unacceptable since it doesn't immunize them from ever having to see or interact with poor people.

The L.A. metro has no shortage of very desirable neighborhoods--they're just too pricey for the average working stiffs and there isn't room for the orchards and open fields that families seem to desire. I'm just wondering how long the CV & SC will be able to absorb the sort of family hankering for the trifecta I mentioned in my original post before it is "wrecked" or simply becomes too expensive. The Conejo Valley already looks like it's pretty much out of reach for regular middle class families.
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Old 06-15-2010, 05:59 PM
 
Location: Earth
17,444 posts, read 25,498,769 times
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Drunkonkoolaid: "The L.A. metro has no shortage of very desirable neighborhoods--they're just too pricey for the average working stiffs and <B><I> there isn't room for the orchards and open fields that families seem to desire.</B> </I>"

And see, that's the problem right there. Too many people are hooked on the SFR model not realizing that there's nothing wrong with raising kids in apartments or condos.

The "L.A. model" is unsustainable. You can't have big lots anymore and you can't keep building further and further out as there's nowhere left to go. Particularly as fuel prices rise and water - always in short supply in the L.A. area - becomes even scarcer.

Quote:
The Conejo Valley already looks like it's pretty much out of reach for regular middle class families.
They're going to need to build more condos and apartments if they want to keep middle class families.
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Old 06-15-2010, 06:27 PM
 
Location: South Bay
7,164 posts, read 20,087,137 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by majoun View Post
Drunkonkoolaid: "The L.A. metro has no shortage of very desirable neighborhoods--they're just too pricey for the average working stiffs and <B><I> there isn't room for the orchards and open fields that families seem to desire.</B> </I>"

And see, that's the problem right there. Too many people are hooked on the SFR model not realizing that there's nothing wrong with raising kids in apartments or condos.

The "L.A. model" is unsustainable. You can't have big lots anymore and you can't keep building further and further out as there's nowhere left to go. Particularly as fuel prices rise and water - always in short supply in the L.A. area - becomes even scarcer.



They're going to need to build more condos and apartments if they want to keep middle class families.
while i don't completely disagree with you majoun, let's be realistic here. besides the uber rich (who could live anywhere they wanted in any sized home they chose), most upwardly mobile folks (no matter what race) with an interest in having a family want a little extra space without a being surrounded by other people on the other sides of their walls. i have no problems living in an apartment for now, but when i go to buy a home, i have no interest in buying an aparment that is just one box in stack of a bunch of other boxes. i really like the east coast row houses as you have no one above or below you (and often have a yard in the back), but unfortunately those never really caught on here in socal.
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Old 06-15-2010, 07:04 PM
 
Location: Earth
17,444 posts, read 25,498,769 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BRinSM View Post
while i don't completely disagree with you majoun, let's be realistic here. besides the uber rich (who could live anywhere they wanted in any sized home they chose), most upwardly mobile folks (no matter what race) with an interest in having a family want a little extra space without a being surrounded by other people on the other sides of their walls.
In SoCal since about 1950, yes. But this was based on a model that is culturally and economically outdated.

I spent my first 13 years of life living in apartments, and I didn't feel like I "lost anything" when compared to people who grew up in SFRs. Most of the kids I went to high school with lived in apartments although I didn't. Remember, extra space also means more expenses. (And I don't think I have to tell you about decidedly upwardly mobile families preferring apartments in SM to SFRs in the adjoining communities, in order to avoid LAUSD).

In the days before zoning in L.A., many people built apartment buildings or separate units on their large SFR lots, and duplexes and triplexes were very popular for the "upwardly mobile" folks of that era (the Miracle Mile, Fairfax, WeHo, Los Feliz, Silver Lake, and parts of Beverly Hills are filled with them. Closer to you, there are some in Ocean Park and Venice).

There are obviously bad apartment buildings, but there are also bad SFRs. I wouldn't

Quote:
i have no problems living in an apartment for now, but when i go to buy a home, i have no interest in buying an aparment that is just one box in stack of a bunch of other boxes. i really like the east coast row houses as you have no one above or below you (and often have a yard in the back), but unfortunately those never really caught on here in socal.
The only living space model indigenous to L.A. and one of the best ever produced was the bungalow court. That combined the community feeling of an apartment building with the open space of an SFR lot (although without backyards, but who needs them?) Sadly, as the SFR became identified with the "California dream" after WW2, bungalow courts ceased to be constructed. I don't think any were built after 1950. (Amongst the last ones built were those on National Blvd. in Mar Vista, some of which have been knocked down.) And, admittedly, the 1950s saw the rise of the "dingbat" apartment building, poorly constructed and designed, which did nothing to make multi-family living more appealing. (Not that the SFRs constructed in that period were that great either....) Unfortunately, they're unlikely to come back, as SoCal seems to favor either high density or strict R-1 with nothing in between.
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Old 06-16-2010, 09:28 PM
 
Location: Northridge, CA
53 posts, read 504,366 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drunk on kool aid View Post

Charles' positively reinforcing cycle can work but then it turns into an unaffordable area. Also, it can be broken if the area has a need for low wage workers. Are there low-wage folks who are emptying wastebaskets and washing the dishes in the back of restaurants in the Conejo Valley & Santa Clarita? Are these jobs being done by the fresh-faced kids of residents? If not, where are these workers living? Once there is a community of low-income families in proximity, it seems to spook many of the better off families.
I can't speak for the SCV but in the Conejo Valley most low wage jobs are not done by "fresh faced kids", as far as where low income residents live in the conejo valley there are a few small low income areas in thousand oaks and newbury park.
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Old 06-16-2010, 10:22 PM
 
Location: Pasadena
7,412 posts, read 8,882,682 times
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Los Angeles county has restricted growth in the Santa Clarita region even though developers want to build even more housing and commercial districts. The issue of water and resources continues to limit growth and unless the county board of supervisors change their minds, Santa Clarita will have only slow growth. The Santa Clarita Valley extends into Ventura county and is still mainly agriculture. Ventura county also wants to limit growth and development.

Conejo Valley is in Ventura County as well so what happens to Thousand Oaks and surrounding areas is an issue for that county.
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