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Claremont maps out plan for moderate growth over the next 5 years

The future of Claremont looks clear through the dust of construction planned for the coming years. Started earlier this summer, 8 new housing developments are planned for the city.

New construction will add more than 500 townhomes, single-family homes, condos and apartments to cater to a growing demand for homes in the Claremont area. All of the construction has a projected completion date in the next 3 to 5 years, if everything remains on schedule.

“It’s kind of a hybrid market. We are in this window of opportunity where the buyers all want to buy right now because the interest rates are going up. Rates took the biggest jumps in a one-week period [in May] than they have in 26 years,” local Claremont realtor Ryan Zimmerman said.

Mr. Zimmerman has seen homes sell exceptionally fast, well above the asking price, which makes the real estate market the most unusual of his career.

Compared to surrounding cities, Claremont’s active housing market is still going strong. Despite the strength the housing market has been able to maintain, the community still has a growing need for more housing options.

According to Director of Community Development Brian Desatnik, the population of Claremont has increased by less than 0.4 percent every year since 1990. With the average household size being at about 2.2 people, Mr. Desatnik expects a population growth of about 3 percent in the next 5 years.

With all of this additional room for residents in Claremont, there is the question of what the future of Claremont will hold once all of the construction is complete.

“This amount of units isn’t really going to substantially change the population or character. The impact to our infrastructure and services is all within a realm that we can easily handle. I don’t think we are going to see any big changes.” Mr. Desatnik said.

Many residents have a positive attitude over new developments, with only a few voicing concern the city changing too quickly, according to Mr. Desatnik.

Mr. Zimmerman said a majority of homebuyers list Claremont as their first pick where they would like to live. Out-of-state buyers looking to move to California often say they would rather just focus on the Claremont area.

Some of the projects have been in the works for over 3 years and finally have the green light to begin construction.

With the Serrano housing development, DR Horton wasted no expense when purchasing property in February 2012 from the Claremont Unified School District for $6.2 million. The project will begin with 54 condominiums, plus an additional 39 units in the coming year or so. The City’s Inclusionary Housing Ordinance ensures that a percentage of the housing developments are for moderate- or low-income households. Construction is expected to begin in fall of 2013.

Construction has already begun on the Citrus Glen property on the corner of Monte Vista Avenue and Base Line Road.

“Honestly, I think the market could use a little slowing down. It is moving a lot faster than people thought it would and it is a little chaotic,” Mr. Zimmerman said.

For more information on the progress of the housing construction call 399-5470 or visit www.ci.claremont.ca.us.

—Christina Collins Burton

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