Sierra Club: 1; Developers: 0. 1,300 acres will be wild space, not 1,266 homes in East County

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By Yosi Yahoudai
Founder and Managing Partner

A large masterplan community slated for an open area between Jamul and Chula Vista is off the books now that the property belongs to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The Sierra Club and several other state and federal agencies purchased nearly 1,300 acres in Proctor Valley Road for $60 million. The land was initially approved by the County of San Diego in 2019 for the Adara at Otay Ranch masterplan community, which would have created 1,266 homes.

“This project would have been a disaster for the natural environment,” said Dave Hogan, the volunteer chair of the Sierra Club’s legal committee.

The Sierra Club was able to help purchase the property after winning a lawsuit against the developer.

“The project broke a number of California and local laws about how we’re supposed to minimize new greenhouse gas emissions,” Hogan explained. “Because we had won the lawsuit, they agreed to consider selling the property if we could find the money and we found the money.”

Hogan said the Sierra Club contributed $25 million it won from another lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Defense. The Sierra Club sued the DHS for the environmental damage caused by border wall construction. State and federal agencies contributed the rest.

The land is now under California Department of Fish and Wildlife control and is part of the Rancho Jamul Ecological Reserve.

Hogan said the Sierra Club now has its sights set on stopping another Otay Ranch development on the eastern shore of the Otay Lake Reservoir.

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About the Author
Yosi Yahoudai is a founder and the managing partner of J&Y. His practice is comprised primarily of cases involving automobile and motorcycle accidents, but he also represents people in premises liability lawsuits, including suits alleging dangerous conditions of public property, third-party criminal conduct, and intentional torts. He also has expertise in cases involving product defects, dog bites, elder abuse, and sexual assault. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of California and is admitted to practice in all California State Courts, and the United States District Court for the Southern District of California. If you have any questions about this article, you can contact Yosi by clicking here.