Irvine is growing faster than ever, and with it comes traffic and empty offices. How often have you driven around Irvine and taken stock of just how many office buildings and development sites sit empty and unsold? And yet there is no plan in place to deal not only with the influx of business, but the traffic that will come with it. And even still we continue to build!
Let’s be clear: I am not against development. I am not against expansion. But we have to be smart about it. We have to take stock and look at what we have. Here’s what I propose:
- A short halt on new construction. During this time current construction will continue, but until we know the impact that this will have on the city we need to take a breather on new construction.
- Build the Veterans Cemetery at the ARDA site. The Veteran’s Cemetery was designated to open originally in November, 2019. It is now 2020 and construction has not even started, with our city council and developers continuing to stall and approve other projects instead. It’s time we honored our veterans and started construction that was approved 8 years ago rather than pushing forward with new, distraction projects. The state has already stated their intent to refund demolition and construction costs associated with the site, so there is little to no excuse anymore.
- Require all new development to come with attached traffic impact studies. By requiring all new development proposals to additionally include studies about how their development will impact traffic in the city, we can preemptively move to minimize this impact. We can also move back towards our original goal, of Irvine being a master planned community. To do this we need actual plans, and for plans we need information.