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SIGN UP below and join our mailing list to receive weekly answers to the candidate questions. 
This week's questions address E Bikes & Safety and Sober Living & Group Home Ordinance     

                                          BREAKING NEWS!  "They're  Back”   2023

Value Rock Reality, the owner of the Garden Plaza on the corner of La Paz and Marguerite,

                              has hopes to sell the property to developer Avalon Bay.          

"Stop The Monster"  questionnaire 

 Question #4
In 2021 the city bought Stein Mart at the cost of 11.9 million. Today, the building is still empty and is an eye sore to the community.  Stein Mart was bought behind closed door negotiations by the city with a lack of transparency leaving many citizens of Mission Viejo distrustful.  
If elected what your vision for the Stein Mart building and how would you win back the trust of the citizens?  
 Time Line
•    2017 March City Council approved the Core Area Vision Plan
•    2020 Aug 12 - Stein Mart files for bankruptcy
•    2021 Feb 23 - The City Council announces that it has started negotiations for the Stein Mart building  
•    2021 March- September – Behind closed door negotiations to Buy Stein Mart take place. 
•    2021 Sept 14 - City buys Stein Mart for 11.9 million using bonds and cutting programs to pay for this building.  
*At the time “ The largest single cut eliminating the Kid’s Factory subsidy” which provided $482,000 annually for the city’s afterschool program for kids’ kindergarten through sixth grade. 
Did the city offer at any time prior to buying Stein Mart an opportunity for its citizens to find out and speak on the matter ???????
Public comment was given September 14, 2021 , but it wasn’t a hearing or discussion. The Sept. 14 meeting was to tell the Citizens that there was a purchase agreement unveiled
In the city council meeting minutes/summary, that are kept and can be seen on the city web site, Citizen Gilbert says it best with his factual quote;  "This plan was never presented to the residents”
OC Voice:


Don't let ValueRock Realty ruin our city forever

48,000 sq/ft of retail

With the addition of the retail plus 6 stories of residential, the building could reach 288,000 sq/ft. By comparison the largest building in Mission Viejo today is Mission Medical Tower which is 5 stories tall and 119,497 square feet. 

626 parking space garage

Can you imagine an additional 600+ cars coming and going on La Paz and Marguerite?! Thats an insane amount of traffic to add around an already VERy busy intersection. 

3 years of construction

6 months of demolition with an additional 30 months minimum to construct this monster will add to pollution and congestion in and around our city core.

Negatively impacts MV forever

This proposal will forever change Mission Viejo and take away the charm we all moved here for. Additional noise, crime, traffic, and pollution will be the legacy of this project.

Six story, 74 foot tall building

At 74 feet, this will be 13 feet higher than the Mission Medical Tower on Crown Valley Parkway located in a commercial district.

234 apartments (36 per acre) 

The proposed plans create the tallest and highest density development in Mission Viejo and places it in a residential neighborhood completely changing the character of the area.

We need your help

Join the fight and stay involved!

Sign the online petition 

Thanks for submitting! We'll be in touch with updates and next steps.

"They're  Back”    April 3rd 2023

Members of the Stop The Monster group, yes its true.  "THEY'RE BACK"

Value Rock Reality, the owner of the Garden Plaza on the corner of La Paz and Marguerite, has hopes to sell the property to developer Avalon Bay.          


Same gift  package to the Citizens of Mission Viejo just  wrapped differently with a different approach. A  five story High Rise apartment building with a pool on the very same corner of La Paz and Marguerite in which “Stop The Monster” campaign led six 4 Corner protests last year 2022.


This monster High Rise also has plans to add additional buildings which will result in increased traffic and parking . But I believe the same relentless approach that led to us winning ( 5/10/22) with a unanimous vote by the city council will ultimately prevail.


Their Approach 

Keep the name of Value Rock out of the public eye. But it’s Value Rock that owns the property known as “the Garden Plaza”. Avalon Bay will take the lead as it tries to acquire a mixed use permit for development, with no fanfare, public announcements or interaction with the Community.  All  with the hopes that nothing is done  prior to July 2nd when they can quietly  submit an application and then start traffic and environmental studies.     


What we did 

Core members of our organization and I found out about this plan in  Feb, but wanted to investigate every lead and make sure before we shared information with  the public today. I again personally have talked  to a number of people behind the scenes as   well as  Avalon Bay and  have confirmed  all information gathered. Currently there are no guidelines for a mix-use housing plan. We need this action to be done in order to slow them down.


We are aware of ab2011 and other housing laws that go into effect July 2nd  of this year. But we believe that there could be some guard rails that will protect us

from another high rise Monster project. 



 April 11th the city council meeting 6:00 pm will tackle and explain the three new housing laws that go into affect July 2nd 2023. The new laws that go into effect this summer are: Ab2011, SB 6, Builder’s Remedy

Facts   (Monster 2.0 2023)

  • Avalon Bay Project manager has stated to me it would take  a minimum of 18 months or more to build. But add 4 to 6 months for demolition will make this project over 2 years.

  • No application has been submitted, nor a  Traffic or Environmental study requested.

  • Many believe that In order to build the New Monster the street will have to be widen.

  • Of the 90 trees in and around the Plaza Garden many if not all will have to be cut down.

  • Building a high rise against residential neighborhoods will increase the following:  Heavy Traffic, Noise pollution, during construction the increase of Poor Air Quality,  Stress levels to those sitting in Traffic, Impede emergency vehicles trying to get through the 2 lane corridor in each direction. Safety issues for surrounding schools as  cars will try and  reroute their approach in order to get around traffic.   

  • There is a 12 site Housing element to be submitted to the State this year by Mission Viejo. But none of the 12 sites is there any mention of the  Garden Plaza.

  • At the Garden Plaza only 18 of the 71 small business are left.  They in turn have a lease until the end of December 23 ,2023 



The following current and former city council have voted against the Monster May 10th 2022  and support our efforts to stop the MONSTER 2.0


Trish Kelly  City Councilwoman  & current Pro Tem major     

Robert b Ruesch City Councilman (Voted  in 2022 as Planning Commissioner  against the Monster)

Greg Rath former City Council man voted against he monster May 10th 2022

Es Sachs  former City Council man voted against he monster May 10th 2022

Wendy Bucknum former mayor

Brian Goodell      current mayor

On Tuesday May 10th  at a packed City Hall, the citizens of Mission Viejo won when The City Council voted  UNANIMOUSLY   4-0  to deny Value Rocks Reality’s request for a mix zoning.  The additional  zoning was to be added to the owners application for the Garden Plaza Project.  The denial in essence stops the building of a 83 foot High Rise Monster.  While City councilmen Ed Sachs was sick and unable to attend, Kelley, Goodell, Raths, and Mayor Bucknum voted Yes to accept the recommendation of the Planning Commission to deny Value Rock Reality of the mix use  zoning request.   
At this time I like to thank  all of you who supported the “Stop the Monster” campaign.
Whether you were one of the 5935 who signed the petition,  placed a lawn sign on your lawn, canvassed, attended 4-corner demonstrations , packed City Hall meetings, handed out flyers or just told a friend.
It was you and all of  you as the Citizens of Mission Viejo who won.  
Today I am declaring this week “Stop The Monster” week.  Wear  your shirts proudly, keep your lawn signs and remember “it took a village to kick out a  Monster” 
Carlos  Pianelli


Last year, 2022, WE WON!!!!

The Citizens of  Mission Viejo Stopped the Monster!

Position / Role
are HERE!

We are excited to spread the word and raise community awareness with these yard signs.We are not charging to have one and availability is first come first serve. If you would like to have one for your yard, email Carlos at to arrange a pick up time .

Position / Role
Saturday May 7 3pm-5pm 

Join us for our final Four Corner Demonstration! While it appears that the City Council will not approve mixed use zoning, we need to keep the pressure on.  As the say " it ain't over till it's over"! We cannot let the Garden Plaza Project get approved.    Let your voices be seen & heard!

Meet at the intersection of La Paz and Marguerite. RSVP Your Participation to  

Bring a sign or use one of ours.   Invite your friends to join us.

Position / Role
This is the BIG ONE
City Council Meeting
Tuesday 5/10 at 6pm

THE TIME IS HERE!!!The city will be voting on whether to approve mixed use zoning on May10. Meeting opens to the public at 6pm. This is our final chance to share our opinions on the zoning issue and Value Rock Realty's insane plan to build an 83 foot monstrosity of a building with our City Council and Mayor. ALL residents are welcome and encouraged to speak for 3 minutes. Sign up to speak at the beginning of the meeting.

Stay Tuned For Information on how we will keep Mission Viejo Monster -Free

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