Creekside's History and Landscaping
Creekside Village was conceived by Fisher Development, Inc. as a stylish senior community to be constructed in the 1980s along Rodgers Creek southwest of Sonoma. On 29 acres adjoining the somewhat older Temelec development, on land once intended as a golf course, some 313 homes were built between 1981 and 1989 on variants of six mostly two-bedroom floor plans, along with a pond, clubhouse, pool, common areas, open spaces and extensive walking paths. For reasons of affordability, each home was sited on a small lot and surrounded by a redwood fence for privacy.
From the very beginning, the developer made two far-sighted decisions which still define Creekside’s appearance today. All our homes are distinctive A-frames in style and painted in neutral colors. And all our streets, walking paths and public spaces are adorned with exquisite and diverse landscaping, all maintained by our HOA.
To learn more, you may wish to read this nostalgic Creekside history, perhaps written as a sales promotion in the 1990s.
From its conceptualization by Fisher Development in the early 1980s, Creekside was destined to be a lovely place. For reasons of affordability and privacy, it was conceived with a fence around every house; that left a narrow, clearly defined open area to the sidewalk, an area that could be planted lavishly, without grass, and maintained by the HOA.
Creekside's original landscape design was created by Michael Painter (1935-2018), a Fellow of the American Society of Landscape Architects. Among his many notable projects are the Presidio Parkway, the John F. Kennedy grave site at Arlington National Cemetery, the Genentech campus, the Great Highway/Ocean Beach reconstruction, Children’s Playground in Golden Gate Park, the Twin Peaks overlook in San Francisco, Blair House in Washington D.C. and the HP corporate headquarters in Palo Alto.
When Fisher Development began the second phase of Creekside Village in 1987, to extend Painter's style it engaged a promising landscape design firm just formed in St. Helena, Jonathan Plant & Associates. Plant has since designed numerous distinctive northern California projects, commercial and residential, including the French Laundry, Far Niente Winery, Freemark Abbey and Stag’s Leap Winery, and has won numerous awards.
Early on, there was talk placing an attractive CREEKSIDE VILLAGE sign on Avenida SebastianI as you enter Creekside from Arnold Drive. In 1988 the firm of landscape architect Anthony Guzzardo in San Francisco drew at least two plans but neither was ever built. You can see them here and here.
Many Creeksiders are ardent walkers. They transit Creekside streets, sometimes just the Crocus Drive loop or sometimes directly to a particular destination such as the pond. But they often start in Creekside and do a full circle through the adjacent community of Temelec, the origins of which are described in the same 1990s history linked above.
Of particular interest in Temelec is the old Carriage House. This structure, located across the street from 220 Temelec Circle and now adjacent to a large vineyard, was built in 1858 and is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Walkers often identify it as the Garage or the Stables or the Barn. But historically, this structure is the Temelec Carriage House. In December of 2020, the Sonoma Index-Tribune ran this lovely feature about the Carriage House.