Newport council to take up zoning change for proposed senior living home

A rendering depicts the proposed three-story Harbor Pointe Senior Living facility near Bristol Street and Jamboree Road in Newport Beach.
(File Illustration)

The Newport Beach City Council will consider a zoning change Tuesday that would allow a large senior care facility near John Wayne Airport.

The proposed Harbor Pointe Senior Living would house up to 120 senior citizens in assisted living and more-complex and secure memory care units on a 1.5-acre campus at 101 Bayview Place, currently the site of a Japanese restaurant that would be demolished. For the developer to build the facility, near Bristol Street and Jamboree Road, the council would need to rezone the lot from general commercial office to private institution.

Harbor Pointe would be three stories, reaching about 40 feet tall and covering about 85,000 square feet. It would be staffed around the clock with up to 30 employees at a time.

During Planning Commission discussions preceding the council’s planned vote, opponents of the proposed facility shared their anxieties about how it might affect traffic, area property values, future land uses and the safety of neighbors and facility residents.

Residents of the nearby Bayview Court neighborhood have been among the most vocal critics.

The Planning Commission, however, recommended in December that the City Council approve the project, saying it would address a local need.

Because a senior care facility likely would require more emergency medical services compared with the existing Kitayama restaurant, the developer, Centerpointe Senior Living, has agreed to pay a $1-million “public benefit fee” to add an ambulance based at the nearest Newport Beach fire station about a mile and a half away. The city would keep any funds left after the purchase of the ambulance.

The developer also proposes chipping in $150,000 for nearby groups, including homeowners associations and the Newport Bay Conservancy, to spend on programs and improvements.

Tuesday’s council meeting starts at 4 p.m. with a study session, followed by the regular session at 7 p.m. at City Hall, 100 Civic Center Drive.