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Community Profile: Citrus Heights celebrates 20 years of cityhood

By Tinka Davi

The new Citrus Heights City Hall is just down the street from the old location on Fountain Square Drive.
The new Citrus Heights City Hall is just down the street from the old location on Fountain Square Drive.

It’s the 20th anniversary of Citrus Heights cityhood and the community is celebrating all year long. The city is recognizing people, places and programs in Top 20 lists - one a month.

A committee came up with the idea when looking for ways to celebrate its anniversary, said Devon Rodriguez, city development specialist.

“It’s meant to be fun.”

The city is still completing categories. They’re looking for residents who have lived there longer than 50 years. Over 10 or 11 they’ve heard from have lived there longer.

For October’s Best Photos, the city wants submissions via Twitter (@CityofCHeights) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/CityofCitrusHeights/) pages using the hashtag #CHturns20.”

If there were a Top 20 list of the newest developments that would probably be headed up by Mitchell Farms from Watt Communities.

Mitchell Farms is named for the land holdings of one of the city’s long-time residents, Ted Mitchell, 91.

The proposed 55-acre community will have 265 homes with five villages, said Kevin Webb, Watt Communities’ Northern California Division President. It’s located along Arcadia Drive.

Home designs and lot sizes will vary depending on the village.

Extending down the middle of Mitchell Farms is 22 acres that will be given to the Sunrise Parks and Recreation District and will be great for walking from one end of the development to the other.

Mitchell Farms is cur rently going through the planning process with the city.

“We are excited about the potential,” Webb said.

“Mitchel Farms is the last largest land area that’s developable,” Rodriquez said. “The city is 98 percent built out and it’s the last parcel of vacant land of that size.”

No 2 on that new homes list might be Watt Communities’ Mariposa Creek, with 15 homes along Antelope Road. Home designs from the builder’s sold-out AutumWood community were so popular that they will be used for Mariposa Creek.

Citrus Heights buyers tend to move within the city or move back after living elsewhere, Webb said.

“It’s an eclectic group of people.”

Albert Fox, city councilmember, said people like Citrus Heights for its walkability, ease of getting around and freeway access.

Both Fox and Webb praised the city’s Police Department, saying it’s one of the best in the region.

Cynthia Woods, president of the Women’s Council of Realtors Sacramento and broker associate with Weichert Realtors - Galster Group, said people like Citrus Heights because it’s a great place to raise a family.

“The schools are in the highly rated San Juan Unified School District and it has several youth-oriented sports organizations,” she said.

“Housing is more affordable and the restaurant and retail sector appears to be growing,”

“There is a sense of community in the area,” she said. “Since it is its own city and provides its own services that adds to the community spirit.”

Citrus Heights has done a great job improving its infrastructure, medians and curb appeal since becoming a city, she said.

“Citrus Heights is in the middle of shopping areas, has public transportation and nearby medical facilities.”

Fox pointed out the city’s several shopping areas including Sunrise Marketplace, the Marketplace at Birdcage which is very walkable and inviting, and Citrus Town with fast food places and restaurants.

Others, Rodriguez said, are Capital Nursery Plaza, site of the former nursery, and Auburn Boulevard with several businesses.

Dignity Health Foundation is constructing a medical office building on the former site of the city’s Community Center and Fountain Square Nursery.

“It will be 68,000 square feet with three stories and will provide 770 professions jobs in our city,” Rodriguez said.

City Hall has moved north of the post office on Fountain Square Drive.

Citrus Heights currently has 121 single-family homes listed for sale and 15 condominiums, Woods said. The lowest home price is $265,000; the highest is $430,000 and average price is $354,200.

Condominiums range from $129,900 to $369,000; average price is $212,363.

“It’s definitely a seller’s market,” she said.

Tinka Davi is a freelance writer and editor based in Folsom.


Where: 13 miles northeast of Sacramento

Size: Approximately 14 square miles

Population: 84,000

Incorporated: Jan. 1, 1997

County: Sacramento

Government: City Manager/City Council

Check out Citrus Heights’ Top 20

A Citrus Heights committee charged with coming up with ways to celebrate the community’s 20th anniversary of cityhood came up with a plan to recognize long-time residents, oldest businesses, best events - a list for each month.

“We wanted to do something fun that would bring the community together, said Devon Rodriguez, the city’s development specialist and the go-to person for Top 20 information.

The months of January through September are posted; however, the city has put out a call for the following:

Residents who have lived in Citrus Heights continuously for over 50 years; they’ll be included in a follow-up presentation to the city council.

For October’s Best Photos, Rodriquez said, “We would welcome people’s submissions on our Twitter (@CityofCHeights) and Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/CityofCitrusHeights/) pages using the hashtag #CHturns20.”

Here’s a sampling of a few Top 20 lists:

▪ Things You Love About Citrus Heights includes the people, central location, Police Department, creeks and nature preserves.

▪ Oldest Businesses include Fireside Lanes, Sunrise Rollerland, and Hall’s Furniture & Appliances.

▪ Natural Scenic Spots to Enjoy: Arcade Creek Park Preserve, Calvary Cemetery Vineyard and Rusch Park.

▪ Best Events: 20th anniversary block party, Christmas tree lighting and Hot August Bites.

▪ Long-time residents in alphabetical order include the Alexander family, Betty Leonard Bentzen, Lorraine Furry, the Guisti family and Ted Mitchell.

Top 20 lists are on the city’s website, http://www.citrusheights.net/501/Top-20-Lists.

– Tinka Davi