Board votes to move on with Osuna home sale

RANCHO SANTA FE — The Association voted unanimously to take the next step in selling the single-family home and property that has been split from the Osuna Ranch by sending out requests for proposals to local realtors.“In 2011, the board of directors authorized a lot split on the Osuna Ranch that split off the main house from the horse facility,” said Jim Putnam during a report to the board at its March 1 meeting. “On Feb. 22, 2012, the Finance Committee recommended the board send out an RFP to the local real estate firms and list the Osuna House for sale.”

Putnam told the board he had done a little research and learned that three acres of comparable horse property with a home should cost in the neighborhood of $3 million, but said an official appraisal is needed.

The Association purchased the 28-acre Osuna Ranch in June 2006 for $12 million with open space funds. The intent is to use it for historical education, as a meeting place for members and as an equestrian center.

In May 2010, the Osuna Committee asked for $150,000 for funding for portions of Phase One of the Osuna Master Plan. It was to be used mostly to satisfy the county requirements for a major use permit for the planned lot split. Also the fire department wanted the main driveway to accommodate a fire engine and they also wanted a fire hydrant, an 8-inch waterline and a backflow prevention device. Nine pepper trees had to be removed from the property so that there could be a clear view on the roadway from the driveway.

All those requirements have been met and now the split is complete.

It has been hoped by the Osuna Committee that some of the profits from the sale of the home be used to help restore the Osuna Ranch.

Association member Sam Rossini said he has heard that $300,000 was needed to finish the restoration and he is concerned.

“I urge you not to spend one penny to rejuvenate (the ranch) until the property is sold,” he said.

At the Jan. 9 Association meeting, Ron McMahon, president of the Osuna Ranch Steering Committee, reported that no additional work can be done on the restoration project until the board can determine how it can be funded.
McMahon said he also hopes that additional funding can also come from open space funds, private grants through the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation, community fundraising and historic restoration grants.

The next phase includes restoration of the adobe, quarters for an on-site caretaker and bathrooms and a small kitchen for visitors.

The cost is estimated at $30,000 to finalize construction documents, $275,00 for the actual construction and $75,000 for landscaping.

Built in 1831, the original two-room adobe underwent a restoration and expansion in 1924 by Lilian Rice, Rancho Santa Fe’s original architect. She supervised the construction and new adobe bricks were manufactured to replace missing or damaged wall sections.

McMahon said the Osuna Ranch is one of the most significant historic sites in the state of California.

“We need to find the most appropriate company to represent us and sell that property,” said Jack Queen, board president.

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