Thousands of new homes could be built along the perimeter of a former Marine base in Orange County that officials envision being turned into one of the nation’s great urban parks, according to a proposal being considered by city officials in Irvine.
The proposal from developer Fivepoint Communities Inc. would more than double the number of residences that would be built on the property surrounding the Great Park by changing the zoning of land that had been marked for commercial use and offices, city officials said.
In exchange for doubling the housing to more than 10,000 homes, the city could potentially receive up to $200 million from the developer.
But even that falls far short of the $1.4 billion in future redevelopment funds that were redirected to the state to help plug California’s ballooning deficit.
Those funds made up much of the money that was to be tapped over the next 45 years to turn roughly 1,000 acres of the old base into urban parkland that would feature a rugged man-made canyon, lakes, orchards, meandering pathways and dozens of athletic fields.
Park supporters promised voters in a countywide election 10 years ago that the property would one day rival San Diego’s Balboa Park or Central Park in New York City.
City officials described the report as a first step in the evaluation process.
This story was reported by Times Staff Writer Rick Rojas.