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PROJECT'S FOES, BUILDER TO MEET.

Byline: Gloria Gonzales Daily News Staff Writer

Although the developer of the 4,300-acre Hidden Creek Ranch project has vowed to dedicate 60 percent as open space or parkland, opponents fear that undesirable land will be set aside and that watershed and ecological elements still will be destroyed.

Both sides will have their say at 6:30 tonight, during the third of four public hearings on the 3,200-home project. During the meeting at the Community Center, 799 Moorpark Ave., representatives of Messenger Investment Co. will be on hand to outline their plan and answer questions about parks and open space.

``We certainly hope the city will take a hard and close look at this project and consider residents and the county's concern about the preservation of agricultural land and open space,'' said Carla Bard, environmental analyst for the local branch of the Environmental Defense Council, which plans to send a representative to the meeting.

Gary Austin, a vice president of Messenger Investment, previously has told residents that the company plans to develop 1,680 acres as a series of four ``villages,'' leaving 2,520 acres as open space. Parklike areas would be used to separate the villages from each other and from existing neighborhoods.

The plan also calls for developing four parks, totaling 63-1/2 acres, and two golf courses.

Tonight's meeting also is expected to address the cost of maintaining new parks, should the project go forward. The discussion comes two weeks before city residents vote on a $40-a-month assessment to maintain existing parks.
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Copyright 1997, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Oct 22, 1997
Words:256
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