Areas of Study
- Analysis of key areas of study
More than 50 intersections near the Aera property are being analyzed by independent traffic engineers. The analysis will include recommended mitigations (improvements) to offset identified impacts. In some cases, improvements required by the project will add lane or intersection capacity that exceeds the impacts generated by the project, thus improving existing circulation flows.
Key aspects of Aera’s traffic plan include:
- The project will be built over the span of many years, allowing for roadway improvements to be implimented as or before impacts occur.
- Brea Canyon Road will be widened to four lanes to accommodate new car trips. The additional lanes will be built in the initial stages of the project, before homes are occupied.
- A comprehensive intersection improvement program will relieve congestion at numerous intersections.
- Changes incorporated into the plan’s design dramatically reduce project-related traffic impacts on Harbor Blvd.
- No public roads connect through the property to Pathfinder Rd.
Aera believes our plan, along with other planned regional roadway improvements, will help to reduce congestion despite the new car trips that our planned community will generate. To learn more about Aera’s traffic mitigation plan and about key regional improvements currently being implemented or planned, visit the Q&A page.
Detailed biological reports have concluded that oil production and cattle grazing on the property, combined with the impacts of building the SR-57 freeway through Brea Canyon, have significantly altered the property and greatly diminished its habitat value. The project’s environmental preservation, restoration and management program is designed to restore the biological function of degraded areas while preserving the best natural habitats remaining on the property. Here are the key elements of the environmental plan:
Oak and walnut woodlands:
- A high priority was placed on preserving the best stands of oak and walnut woodlands.
- Oak and walnut woodlands might not perpetuate beyond this generation because cattle grazing operations and non-native invasive plants are choking-out young trees and seedlings.
- The project’s restoration program will help to ensure
the property’s woodlands become healthy and sustainable. The program would include:
- Discontinuing cattle grazing
- Removing non-native tree species in natural areas
- Planting thousands of oaks and walnuts in locations where they will thrive
- Active monitoring of habitat to ensure success
- Existing coastal sage scrub (CSS) is extremely limited, highly disturbed and fragmented, supporting only three pairs of California gnatcatchers.
- The enhancement and restoration program will create more functioning habitat than today’s current fragmented condition.
- The improved health of the CSS habitat will provide on-site gnatcatchers linkages to gnatcatchers on adjacent open space preserves, allowing for the potential for increased genetic diversity.
- Aera’s proposal includes significant enhancements to Berry Creek, which has been severely altered as a result of cattle grazing and oil operations.
- “Natural” water quality treatment basins and vegetated swales will be created throughout the property to filter and manage stormwater runoff.
- The project’s stormwater management plan will meet or exceed regulations and improve water quality.
The project was designed to incorporate a wildlife movement corridor through the property from the earliest stages of planning and in response to feedback from our neighbors. Recognizing that animals can safely cross under Harbor Blvd. and the SR-57 freeway only at one location on each road, the plan’s design sets aside about 700 acres (of the project’s 1,670 acres of preserved open space) to allow unimpeded passage between these locations that lead to adjacent open space preserves.
Key features of the plan’s wildlife corridor include:
- When restored, the wildlife corridor and other onsite preserves will offer water, cover and space for animals as large as deer and bobcats.
- Small mammals that move short distances are primary users of the corridor.
- Corridor design allows animal movement through two safe connection points with adjacent preserved open space: the Harbor Blvd. tunnel and the Tonner Canyon/SR-57 freeway underpass.
- Road kill is a common occurrence when animals attempt to cross at other locations.
A site is being reserved for a new school (likely K-8) on the property for the Rowland Unified School District. Aera is in discussions with the Rowland Unified School District and Brea-Olinda School District to evaluate potential school district boundary options for the property.