Garden Grove

Talks to begin on Willowick use

WILLOWICK GOLF COURSE in Santa Ana is on land owned by the City of Garden Grove.

A divided Garden Grove City Council decided Tuesday night to move ahead with negotiations for the possible reuse of the Willowick Golf Course.

The council voted 5-2 in favor of the opening of talks with three potential developers:

  • Willowick Community Partners (City Ventures, Jamboree Housing and Primestor)
  • The Trust for Public Land, State Coastal Conservancy and Clifford Beers Housing
  • McWhinney Land LLC and Wakeland Housing.

The 101.5-acre site is located within Santa Ana city limits but is owned by the City of Garden Grove. Under the state Surplus Land Act, the seller must give first negotiation priority to open land use and housing, the council was told.

City Councilmember Phat Bui questioned whether the city’s plans would result in costly lawsuits. But Mayor Steve Jones said “I think you’re looking at this sideways,” saying there was no threat of a lawsuit and that the council needed to proceed and move forward with the negotiation process.

George Brietigam (District 1 Councilmember) raised the possibility of errors because of the disruptive effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Both voted no on proceeding with negotiations, which could last for 90 days.

For more details on the various proposals, go to: .

Monday’s meeting also included the annual reorganization of the council. Selected as the new mayor pro tem was Kim Nguyen, the councilmember from District 6. Chosen to serve a second two-year term as the city’s representative to the Orange County Fire Authority – which provides fire and paramedic service to Garden Grove – was Councilmember John O’Neill (District 2).

The next meeting of the council is scheduled for Dec. 22.

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