California foreclosure crisis: Is a bottom in sight?

The signs dotting Montage Drive in North Merced promise contemporary living amidst agriculture.

Innovative, one reads.

Responsible, says another.


Surrounding these signs are 136 vacant lots with weeds and electrical wires sprouting from the ground. Dusty black mailboxes, home to wasp nests, are cemented next to the street. Six model homes with lamps in the windows are protected by chain-link fence. A jackrabbit prances about as if it's the prairie.

Welcome to Paseo, just one of the subdivisions stalled mid-development since the housing market began tanking in late 2005. It's a familiar scene for anyone who's driven across the county. Now this project, launched by Summerton Homes in early 2007, is in danger of going belly-up.

The possible collapse of Paseo, along with recently released data, suggest the county may not have hit rock-bottom with the foreclosure crisis.

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