The City Council has authorized an environmental study on a proposed 461-unit development planned for 57 acres in Bouquet Canyon. On Tuesday, the council awarded the contract to Michael Baker International for nearly $250,000 to conduct an environmental impact report on the Bouquet Canyon Project. This means the consultant can now visit the site, east of Bouquet Canyon Road and south of Copper Hill Drive, to determine any potential impacts to the environment and how those impacts can be mitigated if the development is allowed to be built. At this point, the city has not been notified of any significant impacts, “but the EIR will be appropriate for that review,” said city planner Hai Nguyen. City Manager Ken Striplin said Tuesday’s decision does not indicate the project is approved — the council has simply authorized the EIR to proceed. A decision on whether to approve the project would follow completion of the EIR. “There’s no council approval of the project, just the council approving the staff to hire a consultant to do the EIR for the project, which is paid for by the development and not the city,” he said. MBI’s report could take an estimated 12 months, Nguyen said, depending on findings and if any unexpected concerns arise. Striplin added that approval of a project of this size can take a significant amount of time because it must go through “extensive public meetings, including Planning Commission, City Council and all that is presented just as it has (with previous projects) in the last 30 years.” The Bouquet Canyon Project is planned to use 57 acres of land that is primarily vacant, with a single-family residence currently on the site. The site is surrounded by existing single-family homes, vacant land, the Canyon Center commercial center and Los Angeles County Probation Department property. According to a map of the project, the property would be divided into about 70 lots and include more than 900,000 square feet of residential units. The 461 dwellings would include single-family detached units, townhouses, motor courts and bungalow courts. According to the proposal, 132 of the units would be row homes. The development also includes two gated entries, two recreational areas, trails, park space and trailhead parking. The plans also talk about a natural watercourse and an improved seasonal “high flow” creek area. Besides residential development, the plan includes constructing a “new” Bouquet Canyon Road. Currently, the road creates an odd, curved shape when seen from an aerial view. Nguyen said the plan is to “realign the road so that it makes more sense, something the city has been looking at for quite some time.” With the EIR just recently authorized, there is no estimated date for construction to start, said Nguyen. “The project is very complex. With everything that goes into it, it could take a long time, but we are working as efficiently as possible,” he said. The developer’s planning manager, Scott Covington, could not be reached for comment Thursday. Once MBI’s report is complete, Nguyen said the next steps are to present findings to the public and then meet with the Planning Commission and City Council before the council can approve the actual project.