Copper Hills Estates development postponed until 2020


The Santa Clarita Planning Commission was expected to approve a three-year time extension for Copper Hill Estates last night, pushing the project originally proposed in 2005 to March 19, 2020.

The subdivision, which is approximately 75 acres, will include 95 single-family residential units at the west end of Franwood Drive, the north end of Urbandale Avenue and south end of Copper Hill Drive.

Since the original approval of the project, the Land Developer Associates Corporation has been unable to gain access to the rights to develop the property.

The project has been delayed in one to two year increments since 2007, but this final extension will be the last opportunity for postponement per government code.

“From my perspective, it’s pretty cut and dry,” city of Santa Clarita Economic Development Manager Jason Crawford said. “When we annexed this property into the city, we agreed that we would handle any processes in a way that was similar to what the county would have done. As we look to how we react to it, we also look to what the county would have done…they would have approved the remains of the extensions.”

The previous delays were a result of economic downturn, so the state of California passed bills in 2008, 2009, 2011 and 2013 to automatically extend the subdivision maps, according to the Planning Commission agenda report.

While the former postponements of the project were due to the economy, the most recent delay is due to issues regarding The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP).

Because the LADWP owns the property, it must grant the corporation access in order for development to move forward.

Senior planner for the city, James Chow said if access is not granted by the end of the three years, Land Developer Associates Corporation will have to go back through the entitlement process.

“The applicant will have to record their final math by the end of that time period,” Chow said. “The three year extension would exhaust any remaining extensions that they have left.”

Chow said the developer cannot move forward until the issue is resolved, but the process of needing approval from multiple sources is commonplace.

“It’s not uncommon that maps like these require sign offs from various different agencies,” he said.

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