See the New Master Site Plan for our Fairgrounds!


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[Cross-posted from the Fans of the OC Fairgrounds blog]

During the March 22, 2018 OC Fair Board meeting at the Orange County Fair and Event Center, the following updated information regarding the Master Site Plan process was provided:

  • A workshop will be held during the Thursday, April 26, 2018, Board meeting. The meeting starts at 9 AM with the workshop scheduled to begin around 10:30 AM.  If you want to speak during the workshop, your card to speak must be handed in before the meeting begins at 9 AM.
  • More than one site plan concept will be brought forward to the Board Directors.
  • Work product from Johnson Consulting hired to manage the Master Site Plan process will be posted on the OC Fair website on or around April 2, 2018. The work product posted is promised to be the same as the information given to the Board.
  • A second workshop to be held in the evening during early May has been promised but not scheduled as of this time.
  • A request for proposal (RFP) for services related to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) has been released.
  • The Board Directors will review draft concepts at the May 24, 2018, Fair Board meeting. The formal CEQA process will start after the draft concepts are reviewed.
  • No final selection of a plan will take place until after the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) is certified.
  • The CEQA process is expected to take 6 to 8 months.

If you can’t make the April Fair Board meeting, email your comments to the Fair Board by emailing Summer Angus sangus@ocfair.com and asking her to to forward your email to the Board Directors (Ashleigh Aitken, Barbara Bagneris, Nick Berardino, Sandra Cervantes, Doug La Belle, Gerardo Mouet,  Newton Pham, Robert Ruiz, Stan Tkaczyk).  Starting on April 1, 2018, Directors will have their own email addresses (after years of prodding from Reggie’s blog – V.) When the new Director email addresses are available, the addresses will be posted and prior posts will be updated with the new information.

Questions to Executive Management can be sent to CEP Kathy Kramer kkramer@ocfair.com and VP of Operations Ken Karns kkarns@ocfair.com.

Update April 3:

The OC Fairgrounds (Orange County Fair and Event Center aka OCFEC) has released the draft of the process for the Master Site Plan and draft proposal with phasing of costs. Problematic elements featured in the prior Master Site Plan proposal such as demolition of the recently constructed Main Mall and construction of massive convention center buildings have been removed from the proposal. The proposed phasing of the construction is:

Phase I – Expand Administration Building at a cost of $22.9 million.
Phase II – Replace livestock barn, upgrade Action Sports Arena & equestrian facilities relocation and upgrade at a cost of $21.8 million.
Phase III – Repurpose current equestrian center space at a cost of $16.1 million.
Phase IV – Build new education center and upgrade Centennial Farm at a cost of $27.4 million.
Phase V – Install perimeter fence at a cost of $9.4 million.
Phase VI- Relocate Main Entrance to align with Main Mall at a cost of $50.8 million.
Phase VII – Build parking garage and bridge to OCC at corner of Fairview Road and Arlington Drive.
draft proposal is posted to be considered at the April 2018 Board meeting and is available for download here. Download CHJC-OCFEC-Board-Presentation-April-2018-FINAL-DRAFT_040218
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The constraints placed on the proposal included:
  •  No negative impact on the annual fair
  • Engage the OC Marketplace ownership on proposed changes
  • Review parking and engage Orange Coast College in parking opportunities
  • Insure education facility needs are reviewed
  • Re-visit community opportunities
  • Review Equestrian Center and Equine opportunities

The Master Site Plan Process Milestones to date are:

  1. Early to mid-2016 developed a Request for Proposal (RFP) to find a Master Site Planning (MSP) consultant
  2. Awarded a consulting contract to Johnson Consulting November 2016
  3. First quarter of 2017 information gathering
  4. January 2017 OCFEC Board of Directors stakeholder meeting
  5. March 2017 OCFEC staff stakeholder meeting
  6. April 2017 on grounds partners stakeholder meeting
  7. May 2017 facility users stakeholder meeting
  8. June 2017 Community partners stakeholder meeting
  9. June 2017 Town Hall public meeting
  10. September Board of Directors workshop
  11. Late 2017 early 2018 Develop CEQA consultant RFP

The next steps are:

  1. April 2018 Board of Directors workshop – work towards finalizing draft MSP concept
  2. Date, TBD, (Evening, May 2018) hold public meeting to present the draft MSP concept
  3. April 2018 award CEQA consultant contract
  4. Over the next several months work through the CEQA process


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