Chapman University Submits New Specific Plan Application

Respect Orange is currently reviewing the details of Chapman University’s application. At this time, we do not feel it is right to comment on the details of the plan because the application has not been fully reviewed.  We look forward to releasing a statement and additional information in the coming days, weeks, and months related to the lengthy process. Respect Orange is looking forward to being actively involved in this process to ensure, amongst other things, the quality of life for the family-focused community is not compromised.

2018 Candidates Forum Video

Couldn’t make the 2018 Candidates Forum, watch the entire event below!

The 2018 Candidates Forum was hosted by the Old Towne Preservation Association and co-hosted by the Foothills Sentry Newspaper, United Neighborhoods of Orange, and Respect Orange. Questions to the candidates focused on public safety, homelessness, business development, pension liability, the Orange Park Acres Specific Plan, Chapman University expansion, crime, council districting, the state of city finances, Barrio rezoning, parking meters, Street Fair contract renewal, and several other issues.

Candidates for Mayor included John Russo, Doug Vogel and Mark Murphy; and candidates for City Council included Daniel Correa, Zachary Collins, Jon Dumitru, Betty Valencia, Kimberlee Nichols, Chip Monaco and Adrienne Gladson. Council candidate Marilyn Rollins had a conflict and did not attend.

2018 CANDIDATE FORUM

click here to view program flyer.
click here to view program flyer.

 RSVP here as seating will be limited!

Respect Orange is co-hosting the 2018 Candidates Forum in conjunction with the host, Old Towne Preservation Association (OTPA), and co-hosts United Neighborhoods of Orange, and Foothills Sentry Newspaper.  Candidates and their positions on issues facing the City of Orange will be featured at the Orange Candidate Forum at 6:00 pm, Tuesday, October 2 in the Council Chambers of City Hall.

The program is free and open to the public.  Refreshments will be served immediately after the Forum so voters can meet the candidates.

Issues expected to be raised include:

  • Chapman University Expansion
  • Public safety
  • Homelessness
  • Business development
  • Pension liability
  • The Orange Park Acres Specific Plan
  • Council districting
  • The state of city finances

Candidates for Mayor:

  • John Russo
  • Doug Vogel
  • Mark Murphy

Candidates for City Council:

  • Daniel Correa
  • Zachary Collins
  • Marilyn Rollins
  • Jon Dumitru
  • Betty Valencia
  • Kimberlee Nichols
  • Chip Monaco
  • Adrienne Gladson

RSVP here as seating will be limited!

OHS FFA PRESENTS FARM FEST 2018

The Orange High School Agriculture Program is opening its barn doors to the community on Saturday, May 12, 2018.  The OHS FFA working farm is where students raise all forms of livestock, exotic animals, fish, plants, and participate in other projects, such as floral design, landscaping, and gardening.

Come out to the East side of campus (corner of Walnut and Harwood) to tour the farm, see the animals, including sheep, pig, cattle, rabbits, chickens, and more.  There will also  be games for kids, farm demos by the OHS students, food for purchase, and prizes.

CLICK HERE to view the event flyer.

Meeting with City Council Candidates

Fair – Rational – Reasonable

During the 2018 Fall elections our city will be voting to fill available seats on the city council.  Respect Orange has met with two non-incumbent candidates (the only two non-incumbents to date), Ms. Adrienne Gladson and Mr. Chip Monaco (click on the non-incumbent name to be directed to their website).  Council member Kim Nichols is also running to keep her seat  and we have not had the opportunity to sit down with Ms. Nichols as of yet.

Our meetings with each non-incumbent candidate were good and it gave us the opportunity to get to know them, hear their platform, and where they stand on the issues that are going to be driving Fall’s election; Chapman University projects, Sully-Miller site projects, and homelessness.

While we are looking forward to October’s candidates forum, we believe candidates should be fair, rational, and reasonable to properly tackle the complex issues that face our city.

Meeting with First Christian Church

Respect Orange recently met with the senior pastor at First Christian Church of Orange, the landlord of the school facility in which the TLC Charter School has entered into a lease agreement. First Christian Church of Orange reiterated they are committed to being a good neighbor.  Respect Orange also had the opportunity to walk the grounds with church representatives and saw first hand the space allotted for the school, including play/recreation areas and parking spaces.

 

2018 State of Old Towne Orange Event

Our friends at the Old Towne Preservation Association (OTPA) are hosting the third annual State of Old Towne on Monday, April 16, 2018 inside the Community Room at the Orange Public Library.

This is an opportunity to ask Chapman University’s VP of Community Relations questions aboutChapman University’s impacts to the community and anticipated expansion.  Mayor Tita Smith, Police Chief Kisela, and City Manager Rick Otto will be on the panel to brief the community on issues impacting Old Towne Orange, not limited to homelessness, parking, Chapman student housing, and other subjects you may choose to bring up during the Q&A session.

OTPA is also providing free refreshments to those in attendance.

More information can be found at www.otpa.org

 

Metrolink Parking Structure Update

The Metrolink Parking Structure has an anticipated completion date of Late 2018/Early 2019.  See below for images and updates!

EXCAVATION COMPLETED!

In late February, crews finished excavation of the two underground levels of the parking structure.  With the installation of the building’s foundation underway, crews will begin building upward

(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)
(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)
(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)
(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)
(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)
(CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)

 

MOVING FORWARD

Starting in mid-March, a temporary street staging area for construction vehicles and supply trucks will be established on southbound Lemon Street, adjacent to the project site, to maximize safety and productivity during ongoing construction activities.

Southbound Lemon Street Closures:

The temporary staging area will require closure of the Lemon Street southbound lane and shoulder between Maple Avenue and Chapman Avenue.  Street staging will occur as needed, between 7 a.m. and 5:30p.m., Monday through Friday.  During this time, traffic controllers will help guide motorist traveling near the work zone.

Alternative Traffic Routes:

Northbound: The northbound Lemon Street travel lane and sidewalk will remain open to motorist, bicyclists, and pedestrians.  Parking along northbound Lemon Street will also remain

Southbound: All southbound motorist are encouraged to use Cypress Avenue or Olive Street as an alternate route while southbound Lemon Street is closes.  The northbound Lemon Street sidewalk will remain open for pedestrians.

Bus Stop: Effective March 13, 2018, the OCTA bus stop located at the northwest corner of Lemon Street and Chapman Avenue for routes 54 and 453 will be closed.  Passengers can board at the Orange Transportation Center.

Alternative Route Information
Alternative Route Information (CLICK TO MAKE LARGER)

 

Construction schedule and operations are subject to change.

For more information, contact OCTA Community Relations Andrea Hammann

Big Thanks To The Community!

Respect Orange accomplished their goal of bringing the topic of this charter school to the attention of the city council and our community.  While we recognized our City Council did not have jurisdiction over education matters such as in the case of this issue, our request for individual Orange city leaders to contact OCDE/OCBE about the negative impacts to the community was met with the community’s turnout at the council meeting.  Respect Orange thanks each of the dozens of community members who attended the city council meeting to express their concerns with this proposed project.

Another positive outcome of the public comment offered about the TLC proposed charter school was a statement by Ms. Dana Kinkaid, Sr. Pastor, of First Christian Church of Orange, the landlord of school facility that TLC has entered into a lease agreement with to operate the proposed charter school at.  Ms. Kinkaid, indicated to the community in her public remarks to the city council that First Christian Church is committed to being a good neighbor and ensuring that TLC abides by the Conditional Use Permit requirements that currently exist for the site.  Respect Orange intends to meet with the church leaders to open and maintain a dialogue so going forward, we can continue to share the community’s concerns directly with the property owners of the proposed charter school.

We were happy to hear the charter was only approved by the OCBE on a conditional basis that includes, but is not limited to provisions that requires TLC make changes to its proposed charter school’s finances, and develop and submit to the OCDE a MOU to be drafted which fully outlines the partnership between TLC and Chapman University and how that will relate to the establishment and ongoing operations of the proposed Charter School.

Our hope is that the community can come together with a greater understanding of the very real impacts this type of school has for our community, property values, infrastructure, and quality of life.  Respect Orange believes further communication between the school, church, city and the community will continue to benefit Orange as this issue continues to develop.

TLC’s Charter Petition (Business Plan)

Respect Orange has obtained and had the opportunity to review Tomorrow’s Leadership Collaborative’s (TLC) charter school business plan, which is commonly called a petition.  There are images of the petition at the bottom of this post, to show the massive size of the petition.  To be clear, Respect Orange is not against charter schools, but rather against this specific charter school and situation.

While Chapman University has come out publicly to state (click here) “the university is not a partner in the proposed TLC charter school” and that the letter on official Chapman University letterhead written by the dean of Attallah College of Educational Studies “does not serve as an official institutional endorsement from Chapman University” , documents in the TLC petition state otherwise.  The two entities are contradicting themselves, which is very confusing to the community.

CU_Official_Comment
Click to read official CU statement

 

Click here to read the TLC Petition
Click here to read the TLC Petition

 

In fact, the TLC petitioner (applicant) had to affirm all of the information in the petition is true.  You can read the pages of the TLC petition that mention Chapman University as a partner, collaborator, and stakeholder (CLICK HERE).

The applicant’s affirmation and application contradicts the statement made by Chapman University.  If CU is not a partner, as is claimed, then the TLC petition is null and void because it is not truthful and relies too heavily on “partner”, “collaborator”, and “stakeholder” Chapman University.  If CU is a parter, collaborator, and stakeholder (as claimed in the TLC petition) then CU has been untruthful to the community.

Chapman University has made up a lot of positive ground in the community the past few years by supporting the party ordinance and committing to build additional dorms.  We would not want to see the good will built by CU destroyed over this matter.  Respect Orange encourages Chapman University to write an official letter directly to the Orange County Board of Education to set the record straight.  A letter, similar to this (CLICK HERE), would go a long way to reinforce Chapman’s commitment and, most importantly, RESPECT to the Orange community.

 

Petition_Front

Petition_Thickness

Petition_Spine