Fountain Valley delays action on controversial Crossings plan – Orange County Register

FOUNTAIN VALLEY — A hotly anticipated hearing and decision Tuesday night on a plan that could forever change the face of the city fizzled when the Fountain Valley City Council decided to postpone action.

At the suggestion of Matt Mogenson, the city’s director of planning and building, the council decided unanimously to suspend consideration of the Fountain Valley Crossings plan to allow for revisions of the final environmental report and to give the public more time to review the document.

The Fountain Valley Crossings plan, which would free zoning on 162 acres of industrial property to allow entertainment, retail and high-density housing, was put on hold after concerns were raised about the final environmental impact report.

The report, required to be accepted by the council before the plan can move forward, will be made available for 45 days. Mogenson said it would likely be a minimum of 3 1/2 months before the report returns to the council.

Mogenson said he didn’t believe the delay was legally required but made with “an abundance of caution.” The city added into the report an additional analysis of traffic and nearby development.

The Crossings is an area in southeast Fountain Valley bounded by the Santa Ana River and Ward Street, and Talbert and Ellis avenues. It is home to businesses, such as furniture stores and manufacturing, that require large plots of land. The area is notable for areas with chain-link fencing topped with razor wire and is described as “underutilized” in reports.

By lifting zoning restrictions on the land and streamlining processes, city leaders say it would free land owners and developers to build retail, entertainment and housing and remove blight. A major component is an “activity core,” with a concentration of restaurant, retail and entertainment businesses and a “main street experience” that designers say the city lacks. The area would also include multi-unit housing.

Although the consideration of the plan was…

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