Who Owns Property on the Proposed Union Pacific Trail? Update Mid-September 2023

The city council majority, Jung, Whitaker, and Dunlap, chose to return the $1.78 million state grant meant to create a green open-space trail between Union Pacific (UP) and Independence parks that had been planned for years. Mayor Jung’s motion was to send the funding back unless it could be diverted to open UP Park – something staff said was unlikely to be accepted by the granting agency. The trio also denied requests from both Councilmembers Charles and Zahra to discuss whether the funds could be used to open the long-closed UP Park on Truslow.

As the deadline to begin construction is August 2024, this decision could be reversed if one of the three agreed to join Charles and Zahra and bring it back. However, comments from the three make that scenario seem unlikely. These included calling neighbors, who came to speak in favor of the trail, a politically motivated “Special Interest Group,” and railing against the state legislature and governor for wasting taxpayer dollars on such items.

The question of who owns property bordering the trail area came up with charges that the Bushala Brothers Inc., a development, restoration, and property management company, owns much of the adjacent property and has other plans for the trail land. The Bushala family are generous contributors to the campaigns of Jung, Dunlap, and Whitaker and oppose the trail.

The trail property lies between the backs of buildings fronting Walnut to the north and Truslow to the south. Various documents show Bushala Brothers Inc. as owners of several properties on the trail, including the largest at 392 W. Walnut (a 70,972 sq foot building currently leased by Bon Suisse), which borders S. Richman and backs onto the proposed trail. At the other end of the trail next to UP Park is the Elephant Packing House at 201 W Truslow (25,200 sq ft), also owned by Bushala Brothers Inc.

Why a green space trail would be a problem for whatever the Bushala’s have in mind for the trail was not revealed by Tony Bushala, who was contacted by the paper. Other Bushala-owned properties (not a complete list) include:

  • 110 E. Walnut (Bushala Bros Inc (BBI) office),
  • 112 E. Walnut (Ice House leased to a church group and Damion Lloyd Photography, who is also a Parks and Rec Commissioner.),
  • 210 E. Walnut (SCE Transmitter yard next to SOCO apartments was developed and is managed by BBI),
  • 310 E. Walnut (leased to Market Cold),
  • 410 E. Walnut (leased to several businesses)

3 replies »

  1. “The trail” at this point, it’s clear that there is no trail. Safe to transition to “the failed proposal.”

  2. Why should Bushala talk to you people who regularly slag him?

    Why not ask the City Planning Department about their behavior over the years in squelching creative development in the adjacent 30 acres. You won’t get an honest answer, but that’s good because you don’t want one.

    • Zenger – Got to wonder why Bushala won’t reveal his plan for the trail property to the public. According to the 2012 Bike Report the trail from UP park to Independence Park is a long in place portion of a longer trail that follows the abandoned UP track line from South Fullerton west and north. Check that out by reading the article posted on this website “Everything You Want to Know about Fullerton’s Bike Plan 2012.”

      Also if by “slag” you are referring to the Observer listing the money used for and against politicians – why shouldn’t people know that?

      Few people are all good or bad. And aside from his shameful lies opposing various candidates over the years, Bushala has also come up with lots of good ideas for Fullerton in the past. I don’t understand why he does not reveal his plans for the trail. If he sent it to the Observer – I am sure the editor would print it. Maybe it is a good idea that the public will be in favor of – but who can tell since it’s a secret?

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