School district sues H.B. over project

The Ocean View School District has sued the city of Huntington Beach over a proposed mixed-use project that it claims would cause overcrowding and other problems in nearby schools.

The lawsuit, filed Jan. 23, demands that the city more fully analyze and mitigate the impacts of the Beach and Warner Mixed Use Project, which seeks to add up to 279 residential units and almost 36,000 feet of restaurant and retail space to a 9.4-acre site at Beach Boulevard and Warner Avenue.

The city estimates that the development will bring in 185 elementary school students and 34 middle school students. According to the district, that extra enrollment would cause overcrowding at Mesa View Middle School and Oak View Elementary School, force the district to spend at least $2.5 million to retrofit and reopen Park View Elementary School, and require Ocean View Little League, which uses the fields at Park View, to relocate.

The lawsuit also claims the city ignored the school district's concerns and that it unlawfully certified a final environmental impact report before the project had won approval.

"I am very disappointed that all of our efforts to work with the city have failed and we have been forced to use the district's limited resources to pursue this lawsuit," school board President Tracy Pellman said in a release. "The school district did everything it could to resolve this matter informally, and the city left us with no other choice."

The Planning Commission approved the project's environmental impact report Oct. 25, but the matter went to the City Council after the district and Councilman Matthew Harper filed appeals. The council approved the report Dec. 19.

City spokeswoman Laurie Frymire said the city does not comment on pending litigation.

Twitter: @MichaelMillerHB

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