Sunday, March 01, 2015

The Original Villages of Irvine

A preview brochure for Woodbridge Village, 1970s.
Historian Ellen Bell will discuss “The Original Villages of Irvine, 1960-1980” at the next meeting of the Orange County Historical Society, on March 12th, 2015, 7:00 p.m. (program begins at 7:30 p.m.) at Trinity Episcopal Church, 2400 N. Canal St., in Orange. This program is open to the public at no charge.

The City of Irvine did not appear by accident. The modern day metropolis, with more than 200,000 residents, was the result of well-designed Master Plan. Citrus groves and cattle grazing land became a collection of individual Villages, including the Village of Woodbridge, a model for urban planning nationwide. Ellen Bell will discuss the transition of Irvine, from a 100,000-acre blank slate to California's 15th largest city.

Orange groves are cleared at Jeffrey Rd. and Irvine Center Dr. during the construction of Woodbridge Village, 1975.
Ellen Bell’s father was a history teacher and she spent her childhood summer vacations riding in the back of the family’s Country Squire Station wagon, stopping at every historical marker or Civil War battlefield that they passed along the way. Her father had a great ability to make history come alive by making it vibrant and compelling. She grew up with a hunger for history and a passion for sharing what she learned.

30 years later, she moved to Irvine, traded the station wagon for a minivan, and began taking her own two kids on fun field trips all over her adopted home of Orange County. California provided a whole new landscape to explore and a whole new history to learn.

Ellen is the author of Irvine: Images of America, and is a member of the Irvine Historical Society. She writes about local history for the Orange County Register and Destination  Her website, OC Day Tripper, is filled with field trip suggestions for exploring Orange County’s historic treasures. Currently, she is producing a series of videos for the City of Irvine, entitled “Hidden Histories.”
The Irvine Dream, 1972: Cycling from home to office through a greenbelt.
I apologize for not consistently posting OCHS programs on this blog over the past six months or so. I'll try to get back to a regular schedule of doing that.

1 comment:

Connie Moreno said...

I lived in Woodbridge for 3 years and loved it. I miss it terribly.