Costa Mesa voters appeared strongly in favor of limiting allowable uses at the Orange County Fairgrounds to a fair and exhibition center, early election returns showed Tuesday evening.
Measure C, which would lock the 150-acre site as the only location to host the annual four-week Orange County Fair and other mainstays like the weekend Marketplace and Equestrian Center, looked poised to pass with a strong majority.
The measure is one of Costa Mesa city leaders' tactics to keep the fairgrounds under city control after Gov. Schwarzenegger moved to sell the state-owned property last year. If it passes, the land cannot be developed for residential or commercial uses, and any major changes to its use would have to be voter-approved.
Costa Mesa is in the midst of negotiations to buy the fairgrounds from the state in partnership with a third-party company.
In another closely watched election, Costa Mesa Mayor Allan Mansoor was leading Tuesday night, with early results showing him likely to beat Long Pham for the Republican nomination for Van Tran's 68th District Assembly seat.