Costa Mesa, CA Real Estate
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Living in Costa Mesa
Members of the Gabrieleño/Tongva and Juaneño/Luiseño nations long inhabited the area. After the 1769 expedition of Gaspar de Portolà, a Spanish expedition led by Junípero Serra named the area Vallejo de Santa Ana (Valley of Saint Anne). On November 1, 1776, Mission San Juan Capistrano became the area’s first permanent European settlement in Alta California, New Spain.
In 1801, the Spanish Empire granted 62,500 acres (253 km2) to Jose Antonio Yorba, which he named Rancho San Antonio. Yorba’s great rancho included the lands where the communities of Olive, Orange, Villa Park, Santa Ana, Tustin, Costa Mesa and Newport Beach stand today.
After the Mexican-American war, California became part of the United States, and American settlers arrived in this area and formed the town of Fairview in the 1880s near the modern intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Adams Avenue. However, a flood in 1889 wiped out the railroad serving the community, and it shriveled.
To the south, meanwhile, the community of Harper had arisen on a siding of the Santa Ana and Newport Railroad, named after a local rancher. This town prospered on its agricultural goods. On May 11, 1920, Harper changed its name to Costa Mesa, which means “coast table(land)” in Spanish. This is a reference to the city’s geography as being a plateau by the coast.
Costa Mesa surged in population during and after World War II, as many thousands trained at Santa Ana Army Air Base and returned after the war with their families. Within three decades of incorporation, the city’s population had nearly quintupled.
The economy relies heavily on retail and services. The single largest center of commercial activity is South Coast Plaza, a shopping center noted for its architecture and size. The volume of sales generated by South Coast Plaza, on the strength of 322 stores, places it among the highest volume regional shopping centers in the nation. It generates more than $1 billion per year in revenue. South Coast Metro is a commercial, cultural, and residential district surrounding South Coast Plaza in northern Costa Mesa and southern Santa Ana, itself part of the South Coast Plaza–John Wayne Airport edge city.
Some manufacturing activity also takes place in the city, mostly in the industrial, southwestern quarter, which is home to a number of electronics, pharmaceuticals and plastics firms. Business services company Experian is the largest employer in the city, and has its North American headquarters in Costa Mesa.
Ceradyne, El Pollo Loco, Emulex, Hurley, RVCA, Toyota Racing Development, the Trinity Broadcasting Network, Vans, and Volcom are among the businesses headquartered in Costa Mesa. A local newspaper, the Daily Pilot, is published by the Los Angeles Times.
Costa Mesa offers 26 parks, a municipal golf course, 26 public schools and 2 libraries.
Annual cultural events
The Orange County Fair takes place at the fairgrounds in Costa Mesa each July. The Fair receives more than one million visitors each year.
The Annual Scarecrow & Pumpkin Festival was first held in 1938, went on hiatus for seven decades, and then was restarted in 2013.
Adjacent to the Fairgrounds is the Pacific Amphitheatre, which has hosted acts such as Madonna, Jessica Simpson, Steppenwolf, and Kelly Clarkson.
The Segerstrom Center for the Arts and South Coast Repertory Theater are based in the city.
Los Angeles Chargers
Costa Mesa became the home to the NFL’s Los Angeles Chargers training center, training camp and cooperate headquarters since 2017. The team agreed to a lease with the facility they moved into prior to their relocation from San Diego.
The building is a former office space, but Chargers players and coaches said it was an upgrade from what the team had in San Diego. The team has a 10-year lease on the building. The team gutted the first floor of the building to make room for team rooms. Construction was more than $3.8 million. Decades prior, the facility was a lima bean farm owned by a Swedish immigrant family who became prominent developers in Orange County.
Institutions of higher learning located in Costa Mesa include Orange Coast College, Vanguard University (affiliated with the Assemblies of God), Whittier Law School (a satellite of Whittier College) and National University (a private university based in La Jolla, California).
Costa Mesa has two public high schools, Costa Mesa High School and Estancia High School. Costa Mesa has two public middle schools; Tewinkle Middle School, which was named after Costa Mesa’s first mayor, and Costa Mesa Middle School which shares the same campus as Costa Mesa High School. Costa Mesa also has two alternative high schools that share the same campus, Back Bay High School and Monte Vista High School and another, Coastline Early College High School which is on its own facility.