BY SONYA SMITH IRVINE WORLD NEWS
In January, the Lennar Corp. planned to present the first maps for the Great Park’s public and private development to the Planning Commission. The commission is tasked with reviewing those maps that include roads, utilities and sewer plans for the park and surrounding development.
At a study session before the actual commission review, Irvine Co. officials demanded that Lennar thoroughly study possible traffic impacts before the map is approved by the commission. The officials said without proper traffic studies, the development could gridlock streets in north Irvine and Lake Forest.
Bob Santos, division president of Lennar’s development surrounding the Great Park, said at the time that he was dismayed that the Irvine Co. felt they needed to say that to the commission. He said initial traffic studies had been completed and that his firm planned to begin the comprehensive traffic studies this year.
Rather than bring the issue, with the dispute over traffic studies, before the commission at that time – Lennar chose to meet and discuss the issues with Irvine Co. officials and city staff.
Talks between the two companies and city staff continue. The maps were scheduled to be heard at today’s Planning Commission meeting, but the agenda suggests that the item be continued again. Staff will present at the meeting tonight for what date the item will be rescheduled.
The delays in the map’s approval also push back development of the Great Park and surrounding Lennar development. Once the first maps are approved, Lennar will be applying for grading permits – which precede development.