Thu. May 30th, 2024

A Superior court judge has sided with Santa Ana’s Usual Suspects, derailing the One Broadway Project development and forcing its developer, Mike Harrah, to return to the ballot box, according to the Voice of OC blog.

The Santa Ana City Council amended the developer agreement last year, allowing Harrah to start the project without preleasing fifty percent of the building.  However the judge ruled that this amendment was illegal because the voters approved the project, via Measure A, under a different set of rules.

The reality is that Harrah likely would not have been able to come up with the money to build the project under our current sad economic condition.  All the Usual Suspects have done is cost Santa Ana taxpayers a fortune in legal costs – and now we are going to be stuck with the bill for a special election.

In this case the Usual Suspects were represented by Jeff Dickman, who is a member of the so-called “Coalition for Accountable Government Ethics.”  What is ethical about overturning the will of the voters, who overwhelmingly approved Measure A – and the OBP Tower?

I hope Harrah will now start over and make this a mixed-use tower, with both living spaces and offices.  And it would be great to put a public park on top of it, maybe even with an observatory.

I doubt the City Council will appeal the ruling so Harrah will have to roll up his sleeves and get back to work.  I look forward to helping him make his case to the voters – again.

By the way, the judge’s ruling probably spells doom for Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Claudia Alvarez’ desire to run for an unprecedented fourth City Council term under Measure D.  That measure gave her a third term but the voters were not told she would try to run two more times on top of that.  She would have to go back to the ballot box to try to further amend Measure D and get the chance to run for two more terms.



By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

13 thoughts on “Usual Suspects use the courts to force a new One Broadway Plaza election”
  1. I don’t care for the way they treat the Caribou at the Santa Ana Zoo. No matter how much my children like to ride them.

  2. Harrah said if the project did not start by December he would wait two years for the DA to expire.

    The city council tried to over rule a vote of the people, and have been rebuked by a judge. I don’t blame the council, they acted on the best advice of city management, and since then the top 3 responsible for the advice have all left.

    Measure D gave us 3 terms as a limit for council members, starting when the voters passed it. I don’t know why you keep mixing it up with an old 2 term limit that no longer exist.

  3. Cook,

    I doubt you could find three voters who cared about the developer agreement. None of the litigants even voted for Measure A.

    Measure D was for three terms, not five. Simple math.

  4. I could come up with dozen or more names for “A”

    And you are right about “D” it was for 3 terms, not 5 and not 1 extra, but 3 full terms after passage.

    (Didn’t you take civics in high school?)

  5. “I hope Harrah will now start over and make this a mixed-use tower, with both living spaces and offices. And it would be great to put a public park on top of it, maybe even with an observatory.”

    Well, you begin to at least HINT at a common-sense solution. Let’s force Harrah to redesigned this phallic, out-of-scale homage to one man’s ego. It needs to be much smaller. The mixed-use idea is a good one. And there’s also been a trend lately in urban development, which I like, of mixing upscale housing with affordable housing in the same development. It could be so much more exciting than a giant glass box.

  6. While mixed use may be a trend, it isn’t a trend that is working in Orange County. The bottom line is that there is no need for this building, mixed use or not. Has anyone noticed how much vacant commercial space we have in the downtown area? Has anyone noticed that there are three schools within a block of this proposed monstrosity? There is virtually no parking for those three schools and currently many parents have to pay into meters just to volunteer at their own children’s schools.

  7. I do believe there was some kind of Council parking meeting this morning, maybe some of those issues can be discussed. I think business owners and school volunteers should be given more parking opportunities. We have all paid our tax revenue with parking tickets downtown.

  8. Anon is correct. Come up with a new design that benefits the citizens (something progressive) No Superficial King Dong Phallus. No Temples of Corporate Greed. No Orange County’s Tallest Financial Lavanderia! America is sick of this nonsense!

  9. A song for Mr Harrah and his city council.
    by Richard Ashcroft, “God in the Numbers” N.S.A. edit

    Sometimes you hold the world in your hands.
    Sometimes the world, it baffles you with plans.
    Some days you drift through it so easy and free.
    Some nights you sleep in blissful harmony.
    How do we leave the wreckage of our lives?
    How do we leave the past out in the night.
    I saw god in the numbers.
    The more I live through history,
    the more I hate it.
    Because we are repeating things we did a thousand years ago.
    We are building palaces of fortune in the sky.
    There is an underclass dying. What’s there for smiling?
    I saw God in the numbers.

  10. I always believed that the lot at hand should be developed for the Red Light District to create reliable revenue flow.

    In addition if you Trojan Horse Candidates would not interfere with my election we would have 1B and Red Light District in it plus some casinos.

    Unfortunately Mexicans have no ability to know what is good for them.

    The problem is City Council not the Usual Suspects.

  11. Boo Hoo! What a bunch of babies…
    We out in AZ would be more than happy to have Mike come back and spend his money (build) here again! You must all have so much work you didn’t take note the working class is not working much of late…
    Where Mike goes, there will be jobs, material paid for, activity that boost all sort of existing business, and when the project is complete an addition to the community to be proud of. Don’t start with the yelling at me that I don’t live there so I don’t know…blah blah, I don’t live there (and won’t, don’t worry) I just would rather have Mike here helping our dead job market survive, not over there getting hen-pecked as he fights to add his money to your ungrateful bottom line!
    You folks THINK your smarter, more important or more special – we don’t see it! Then again, the fellow citizens your state seems to be most proud of, play “make believe” for a living!

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