Salaries were lower then, too. But now the residents could make a hefty profit if they sold. The paseos, the clubhouse and the schools in Old Orchard I make it a sought-after neighborhood. Today, Valencia is home to 55,000 residents, and the master-planned designs of Old Orchard I were replicated in other parts of Valencia as the community was built out. All those amenities mean some former residents who grew up in the neighborhood cannot afford to buy a house there now. Original resident Carole Wheeler said her son, Scott, would like to move back to the neighborhood with his family. “They returned to California from Las Vegas and had hoped to be able to move into the neighborhood, but can’t,” said Carole Wheeler, one of the original residents. “A lot of people can’t move (here), because he earns a good salary but can’t afford to buy here,” she said. The average home in the area sells for about $600,000. Part of what contributes to the value of Old Orchard I is the area’s tight-knit community feel. Kathy Plasterer, who moved to the area in 1967, raised two children in the neighborhood. She said that growing up, her kids knew that they could always knock on any door for help if anything happened to her or her husband. Her children swam at the community pool and became lifeguards. Now her grandchildren swim there. “The grandkids love to walk on the paseos, climb the trees, find insects in the groundcover and chase balls,” said Plasterer, who manages the neighborhood clubhouse. Back when the Plasterers first moved to the area, Kathy had to go to the San Fernando Valley to shop. Now there are local shops to meet her needs. When Jeff Wheeler and his wife, Carole, moved into the neighborhood 40 years ago, it was just after onion fields had been turned into the new community, he said. The Wheelers already were living in the area, in an apartment on Newhall Avenue. Jeff Wheeler was in the Army, and he was assigned to a missile battalion headquarters in a neighboring community. During Wednesday’s ceremony, Newhall Land showed off four recently planted crape myrtle trees at the clubhouse, one for each decade the neighborhood has been in existence. [email protected] (661) 257-5253 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! VALENCIA – The amount they paid for their houses would make today’s buyers salivate. It was 40 years ago that the original residents of Old Orchard I moved into Valencia’s first neighborhood in the master-planned community. On Wednesday, the company that built Old Orchard I, The Newhall Land and Farming Company, celebrated the neighborhood’s 40th anniversary. Old Orchard I is bounded by Lyons Avenue, Orchard Village Road and Avenida Ronada. Several original residents who attended the ceremony said when they bought their houses in 1967 or 1968, they paid about $25,000.