Policy Planning and Entitlement
Aliso Creek Area Redevelopment Plan, Laguna Beach, California
Role: The Athens Group (www.athensdevco.com ) acting as owner- representative and project manager for Montage Hotels and Resorts/Ohana Holdings
Selva Partners Greg Vail, as Director of Forward Planning and Sustainable Development, and Oscar Uranga, as Assistant Project Manager, led and managed a 24-firm design and consultant team for the Aliso Creek Area Redevelopment Plan. The project involves a 325- acre coastal site presently containing an obsolete inn and golf course in a floodplain, a degraded creek, major regional utility infrastructure and an unmanaged 250-acre environmentally-sensitive open space area adjacent to a wilderness park. Project proposal included dedication of 250-acre conservation area, mountains to sea trail final segment, a 72-rooom inn with a 513 subterranean parking spaces, redeveloped nine-hole golf course, restored creek riparian and aquatic habitat, including fish passage provisions, and 47 attached and detached residences.
In-house and project management work included the following:
- Day-to- day management of all aspects of planning effort and consultant team, including direction to architects, landscape architects and civil engineers
- Preparation and submittal of some 250 major work products as requested by the local municipality in approximately one year
- Regular interface with Community Development Department Staff, City Manager, Planning Commission and City Council
- Briefings and presentations to state and federal regulators , community town hall meetings and open houses
- Political strategy management at local state and federal levels, including stakeholder and community preference research and polling
- Presentations and briefings to ownership
- Policy development and legal analysis
- Detailed input to landscape architectural, grading and architectural design and riparian and upland resource management plans, included integrated landscape management, water budgeting and irrigation concepts, regional trail plan
- Coordination of 3-D visual simulations, tentative tract/parcel maps, construction phasing and staging, infrastructure design, lighting, signage, water quality management plans, fire protection plans and fire modeling, hydraulics analysis- including sediment transport, traffic and parking plans analyses, onsite geotechnical investigations, biological surveys, legal opinions and strategies
- LEED certification analysis
- Greenhouse gas emission evaluation and regulatory consistency analysis
- In-house GIS and presentation graphics production and preparation of all supplemental submittal packages to municipality Interface and preliminary negotiations with water and wastewater utilities regarding infrastructure upgrades
- Developed preliminary strategies and investigations for fulfillment of affordable housing
Montage Resort and Spa/Treasure Island Park, Laguna Beach, California
Representative: Laguna Beach Urban Planning Commission
Selva Partner Greg Vail, acting in the capacity of Chairman of the local community Planning Commission shepherded the Laguna Beach Montage Resort and Treasure Island Park through some 37 contentious and complex public hearings. During this several-year process, Vail worked closely with applicant The Athens Group and the community to craft design guidelines and development standards, new zoning, tract maps, sustainable development design, architecture and landscape architecture for the largest project in the community’s history.
Vail also worked to gather community support that resulted in a referendum vote confirming the city leaders’ decision to approve the project. Vail acted as de facto city landscape architect in review of the project plans which included a large community park and botanical garden.
Subsequently, regional planning authorities lauded the project as an outstanding “model for the nation”. In 2006, the Urban Land Institute bestowed the project its Award of Excellence for the Americas. The Montage Resort is consistently ranked as one of the top resorts in the world by such publications as Conde Nast Traveler.
Lake Woodlands, Texas
Client: Woodlands Development Company/Mitchell Energy Prepared lake design and conceptual grading plan for a community centerpiece lake for the Woodlands Planned Community near Houston, Texas, one of the earliest ecologically-based new towns in the USA.
Bolsa Chica Land Planning and Local Coastal Program, Orange County, California; GIS Services
Clients: Landowner and County of Orange
Prepared several versions of early-stage local coastal programs and major components of the companion environmental impact report for a 1600-acre degraded coastal wetland and oil field in the Huntington Beach area.
Provided land use planning services for a mixed use residential (5700 units), public marina, wetlands restoration and regional park project on behalf of landowner and subsequently acted as municipal planning entity’s consultant and state and federal interagency liaison, totaling approximately 40 other public agencies with interest or jurisdiction over the property. Worked closely with citizens’ advisory committees and public activists.
Provided GIS Support for residential development to conclude one of the most controversial and contentious planning and approval processes in the United States during the last 23 years. Work included extensive mapping and monitoring of important resources, conservation and management planning, and extensive interaction with the client and consultants at all levels. Provided client with mapping and analysis support during the Habitat Management Plan and final construction/monitoring phase of the project.
Entrepreneurial US-Indonesia Sustainable Development Representation and Promotion-Jakarta, California and New York City
Entity: BnV LLC: West Java Province, Indonesia
With Indonesian and Singaporean partners, procured a five-year services contract from Governor of West Java Province, Indonesia to cross-promote sustainable development and trade between the USA and Indonesia. Worked directly with West Java governor and staff on initiatives, established representative office and staff in New York City and established lines of communications with senior staff at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (developing country regional government capacity building entity).
Working with Governor of North Sumatra province, acted as co-organizer of the international Network Regional Governments for Sustainable Development Lake Toba Summit conference in the immediate aftermath of the 2004 tsunami disaster in nearby Aceh Province. President Yudhoyono was keynote speaker. Provided diplomatic protocol assistance for visiting dignitaries during the conference and interfaced with government leaders and staff attending from US, Singapore, Netherlands, Spain, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Australia, Iraq and Pakistan.
Related activities include endorsement of efforts by the Indonesian federal Department of Foreign Affairs, interface with US embassy and consular officials, and Sultan of Yogyakarta.
Lake Cipondoh Land Use Plan, Tangerang, Jakarta, Indonesia
Client: Local development interests and Government of West Java
Prepared land use development concepts for a large landholding strategically located next to the Jakarta-Merak toll road, Soekarno-Hatta International Airport west of the capital city in West Java (now Banten) Province, Indonesia. Worked directly with developers, government financing entities and governor and staff in developing an ecologically-based place including restoration and enhancement of a degraded lake as centerpiece of the project. This approach was one of the first undertaken in Indonesia.
Monarch Beach Resort Entitlement and Local Coastal Program, Dana Point, California
Client: Monarch Beach Resort/Nippon Shinpan
Managed design and consultant team and procured all entitlements for integrated resort and residential community. Project was winner of Pacific Coast Builders Conference 1992 Gold Nugget Award-Best Community Site plan-100 Acres or Less-Pacific Rim nations.
Hillhaven Residential Development – Laguna Beach
Acting As owner/developer, created a premium small-scale residential neighborhood in an environmentally sensitive area. Focus was on creating streetscape, landscape and residential design details and materials reflective of the historic heritage and natural features of the site, including grove of 125-year old trees-largest of their specie in the region, into the site design and architecture. Utilized native stone from site for retaining walls and other architectural features.