Twisted saga of failed McAllister Ranch development takes another turn

April 1, 2019
by Lois Henry
Lois Henry

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The saga of a local icon of the 2007 real estate crash continues with yet another twist.

McAllister Ranch, once touted to become a 6,000-home, elite Bakersfield suburb with its own Greg Norman-designed golf course, has a new owner.

Well, part of it. And the owner is only sort of new.

Buena Vista Water Storage District (BV) recently bought the middle 600 acres of the ranch, which includes the golf course, with the intent of using it as a groundwater bank, according to John Vidovich, president of the BV board of directors.

BV, along with Rosedale-Rio Bravo Water Storage District, bought the whole 2,100-acre ranch out of foreclosure in 2011 for $22 million.

Their plan was to bank water on the land but that never got off the ground, leading to a legal falling out between the water districts.

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