Friday, January 6, 2012

Historic blimp hanger to be saved?

During WW II, blimps were used to patrol the coast for Japanese subs
     OK, we’ve heard this sort of thing before, but maybe this time the plan will stick:

O.C. panel approves Tustin hangar park plan (OC Reg)
     The Orange County Parks Commission has approved a plan for the land around the north Tustin blimp hangar to become a regional park.
     The hangar would be restored, and the surrounding 84.5 acres could be transformed into park space, with picnic areas, walking trails and fields.
     The commission voted unanimously in favor of the plan Thursday night. If it is approved by the Orange County Board of Supervisors, the park could open as early as 2016 with construction starting in 2014. The board meets next on Jan. 24.
     The park concept sounds good:
     The park designs have large lawns, with trees lining the trails around the park, a lake and expansive fields. Playground and picnic areas would be open to the public, and a plaza could be built at the base of the North Hangar for outdoor activities like a farmer's market or art shows. Five areas have been marked for parking spaces.
. . .
     The county plans to reopen some of the old buildings for new uses, such as the classroom building, built in 1988…. [I taught there once; it ain't much.]
     O.C. Parks could use the space as a park headquarters or a multiuse space, officials said. The building next to the air tower could be used for a history museum.
     The parks department will be negotiating with the nonprofit Orange County Sports Federation for a future water polo and ice hockey facility. The facility, [O.C. Parks Director Mark] Denny said, "is unique and reflective of a regional park in terms of being a destination."
     Is there some place you go to learn to say things like that? I wanna know so I can bomb it.
     The federation would be organized by the USA Water Polo and with the Anaheim Ducks Foundation would run the water polo and ice hockey complex, reports state.
     "On the frozen water side there's potential for hosting our own professional hockey team, the Ducks, as well as having all the facilities open to the public for recreational use (and) sports teams," Denny said.
     The "frozen water side"? What is the poor fellow trying to say?
     Naturally, Tom Fuentes’ old employer, Tait and Associates—don't get me started—was hired for much of the planning:
     Staff reports show that bonds could be used to pay for developing and building the park. Fees from renting out park space and the hangar could recover some of the money.
     The civil engineering and environmental services firm Tait and Associates was hired in December 2010 to create the conceptual site plan and create a technical and cost analysis of developing the site. The company's contract with O.C. Parks is for $243,320, officials said.
     The article doesn’t describe the fate of the south hanger. I think they’re still gonna tear that one down.
     On our own ATEP property, just north of the hanger, there was a lovely and historic chapel. In their enthusiasm to tear down anything and everything, the district’s already thrown that structure into a trash bin (unless they're behind schedule). Would have been nice to move it to this park, but whatever.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That's good news! I really need a good place to park my blimp.

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