SIMI VALLEY : Schools, Developers Settle Project Dispute


Simi Valley school officials have reached an agreement with two developers who sued the school district last year over a failed effort to build on a 36-acre site at the corner of Tapo Canyon Road and Alamo Street.

The settlement opens the door for possible use of the vacant land, which has been tied up in litigation.

Details of the settlement were not available.

The Simi Valley Unified School District entered into a partnership with CSA Real Estate Development Inc. and Lederer Development Inc. in 1991, hoping to generate millions of dollars for local schools by building homes and a shopping center on the vacant land.


But the project required a zoning change, and the Simi Valley City Council rejected the proposal in 1992.

The developers filed a lawsuit against the district in May, 1994, seeking $4.1 million in damages resulting from loss of construction and profits because the land was not developed. The district subsequently countersued the firms.

In the meantime, school officials have tried to find alternative uses for the property, which has been valued at between $12 million and $14 million and is now being used as farmland.

School trustees held closed meetings with city leaders to discuss selling the land to the city for a new police headquarters. But council members recently backed away from a deal because of legal complications and a potential $1-million price tag. Another site has been chosen for the police station.