Blink, blink, sniffle..
That’s me…blinking back tears of amazement as I read today’s Fivepoint press release, announcing the sale of the first 781 lots in Valencia’s Newhall Ranch, Mission Village project. I can’t believe it… I was beginning to believe that it might not happen in my lifetime.
Learning today that it IS really going to happen, I have the long-awaited pleasure of sitting at my keyboard to write my very first personal news/blog post for Ranch on the River. I am ready to compose a masterpiece as if the keys on my keyboard were made of ivory… I am tickled with nervous excitement, almost giddy to the point that my fingers won’t stay on the keys… ok…. here goes…
“What Matters Is Not the Idea a Man Holds, but the Depth at Which He Holds It”
– Ezra Pound
Wow, that is so true! 30 years ago, I heard rumors about a new Newhall Land and Farm project. 20 years ago, I set my plans in motion and bought several Newhall Ranch domain names. 5 years ago, I started the Ranch on the River website. One year ago, I did a total makeover of my website. 10 months ago, Emile Haddad, Fivepoint’s Chairman and CEO, announced that they would not be calling it Newhall Ranch, but instead call it Valencia…. Wait… What??? Really????
Yep… it’s true. Newhall Ranch is now being called Valencia by the powers that be…. and with that one simple announcement, 30 years of planning blew up in my face in a heartbeat… ugghh… ok…well… take a deep breath, back to the drawing board… adjust and move forward just like I have with ever other “gotcha” along my life’s path.
So, adjust I did…kinda. I will now be calling it “Valencia’s Newhall Ranch” for the time being until it is clearly defined on how they will actually go about sidelining such a historically significant name like Newhall Ranch.
The business side of me understands why going with the name Valencia works. It is a beautiful well-planned community with a great reputation. Why not just continue right? Ok… I get that. I also know they don’t own the domain Newhall Ranch like they do Valencia. Someone obviously dropped the ball on that one… so they had to punt. Ok… I get that too.
My problem with the name change (other than the obvious.. and by the way… why wasn’t I consulted??? 😀 ) is Newhall Ranch was going to be something COMPLETELY new and different than Valencia. It was exciting. It was an amazing undertaking that was groundbreaking in the world of “green development”. There was a huge buzz around it. It was the first of it’s kind in the world. It was unique.
In addition to all that, the emotional side of me mourns the change tremendously because of its significance in our beautiful valley. I loved the name Newhall Ranch because, to me, it was dedicating, what I believe to be the last big parcels of land of the Newhall legacy to its founder Henry Mayo Newhall by calling it Newhall Ranch. The fact that now it doesn’t makes me very sad, as if that part of our history doesn’t matter, which just isn’t true… blink, blink, sniffle.
The Mystique is Gone
The Orange County Business Journal on Jan 13, 2020 announced, “Irvine-based FivePoint Holdings LLC has sold its first homesites at Valencia, a master-planned community in Los Angeles County”. I beg to differ with you… that happened back in 1967 with a little community call Old Orchard.
Announcing the first lot sales of Valencia, instead of Newhall Ranch, is not only confusing and incorrect, it is kind of… old news… but, ok. Valencia is a nice place so it is just going to be bigger is all. However, I do hope they keep their facts straight.
To me, unfortunately, a little of the mystique is gone, but, nonetheless, it will be an amazing place to live… no doubt in my mind.
You know, I actually feel better now. I have wanted to scream my feelings to the world for a long time about the change. I just did… now I am over it. Valencia it is. Onward and upward we go.