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Our View: Canyon Country has plenty to be proud of

Posted: December 24, 2011 7:42 p.m.
Updated: December 24, 2011 7:42 p.m.
 

No place in the Santa Clarita Valley offers as much diversity of lifestyle that Canyon Country offers.
And no other areas of the valley offer the same perception challenges.

Like the rest of the Santa Clarita Valley, Canyon Country has had a proud history. Unlike some other, newer areas, Canyon Country historically has a strong identity — from the “Hi, Neighbor” parade to Frontier Days.

Canyon Country offers some of the lowest-cost housing in the Santa Clarita Valley — and some of the most beautiful estates found anywhere in the valley.

It offers tract after tract of middle-class housing for residents of various income levels and a high concentration of neighborhood schools. Some of those schools have generations-long reputations for excellence. Others have achieved excellence relatively recently – and continue to seek higher levels of achievement.

Along with the established and new schools, there are more parks in Canyon Country than anywhere else in the city.

In fact, there is a higher concentration of people in Canyon Country – about 50 percent of the city’s residents live there – than in any other Santa Clarita Valley community.

The diversity, the wide area that falls under the umbrella “Canyon Country,” the high concentration of residents in pockets of high-density housing, as well as the suburban homes and estates — all mean a lot of what happens in the Santa Clarita Valley happens in Canyon Country.

And a great deal of that is good news.

Canyon Country has relatively new medical office facilities and a major shopping center.

More parkland has opened in Canyon Country than in any other area of the valley recently. More job-creating new development is planned there than in most other areas of the valley.

The partnership between the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley and Sierra Vista Junior High School is a model for other communities.

A lot of the credit for improvements goes to the city of Santa Clarita, which has built infrastructure, worked to establish parks, put ugly utility lines underground and encouraged strong neighborhoods.

But more needs to be done. Because Canyon Country historically has a dearth of infrastructure and no HOAs to monitor neighborhoods, it has had a disadvantage over some other areas of the SCV.

A long-discussed community center for Canyon Country is actually in its infancy. At the Granada Villa mobile home park, the city and volunteers use the community room to provide mentorship and homework help, making a difference with individual youth.

This nascent community center could grow into something much different than the one in Newhall, since the community it would serve is also very different. But it’s encouraging that plans for a center are moving ahead.

And while the pride-inducing “Hi, Neighbor” parade and Frontier Days are things of the past, we know that in neighborhoods throughout Canyon Country, residents in concert with businesses and schools work to make their community a better place to live.

It’s time to bring back the Canyon Country pride that existed when the community had its own chamber of commerce that promoted the area and its pride specifically through regular events.

We call on current organizations, businesses, city leaders, schools, and residents need to make a concerted effort to promote Canyon Country pride again. We’re behind you.

There are many good stories to tell about life in Canyon Country. And, yes, there will be the bad stories, as there are everywhere.

It’s in the best interests of all Santa Clarita Valley residents to let the rest of the world know what a nice community we have here – all of it.

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