Saddleback Canyons

saddleback canyons

Cactus WrenFriends of Harbors, Beaches and Park is the fiscal sponsor for the Saddleback Canyons Conservancy (SCC) whose mission is to protect and enhance the environment and quality of life in the rural canyon areas of southeastern Orange County (Trabuco, Silverado, and Modjeska Canyons).   

SCC’s current major focus is challenging the Saddle Crest amendments. The project includes a 65-unit dense housing tract on 113 acres adjacent to the Cleveland National Forest just north of Cook’s Corner along scenic Santiago Canyon Road. The Foothill/Trabuco Specific Plan (FTSP) requires development in Trabuco Canyon to be rural in character and protect the area's ancient oak forests, scenic ridgelines, and other cherished natural resources, and to provide a buffer between urban development and the Cleveland National Forest. But Rutter refuses to follow the FTSP and instead proposes gutting it to construct Saddle Crest. Rutter's amendments would allow huge traffic increases on rural Santiago Canyon Road (exceeding what the General Plan says the road can safely handle), over 150 mature oak trees to be destroyed, ridgetops bulldozed, and canyons filled in. Rutter’s amendments to the OC General Plan eliminate the requirement that new development in the area be “rural in character.” Saddle Crest is the epitome of a sprawl development, completely at odds with the County’s “Sustainable Communities Strategy” (SCS), which encourages increasing density in developed areas while minimizing development in open space areas.  The Saddle Crest property has been on FHBP’s Green Vision map for years.

How You Can Help

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Contact Saddelback Canyons Conservancy



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