Sunflower Avenue, Avenue of the Arts and the San Diego Freeway, is a
collaboration between Commonwealth, the Orange County Performing Arts
Center and South Coast Partners, the owner of South Coast Plaza.
The South Coast Partners and the Center's portions of the project were
approved earlier this year, but Commonwealth's part has been held up
mainly because of disagreement about the length of time the developer has
to maintain Isamu Noguchi's California Scenario sculpture garden.
Intense negotiations about a proposed development agreement between
the city and the developer have been ongoing for months.
While both parties at a May 21 meeting finally agreed to require
Commonwealth to maintain the garden for 50 years, issues of parking and
how much money the company will have to provide for the area are keeping
them from reaching an agreement.
WHAT TO EXPECT: The council, which preliminarily approved the 50-year
term May 21, also approved a requirement that the developer provide the
parking and money for the Theater Arts District.
The council could give final approval to that decision at the risk of
not having the developer sign the agreement.
A plan for the Theater Arts District has yet to be drafted and
Commonwealth said it can't agree to unknown amounts of parking and money.
Developer spokesman Phil Schwartze said he hopes to persuade the city to
agree to a fixed number or a cap on the amount.
If no fixed amount is agreed on, the developer could wait until the
Theater Arts District plan is approved, which would include the amount of
money and parking that would be required, and in turn put those set
amounts into the development agreement at that time.
City staff recommends the council postpone the issue for a couple of
meetings to allow the staff to evaluate Commonwealth's request for a
RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT STANDARDS
The council will consider giving final approval to new standards for
The discussion was scheduled for the May 21 meeting, but the council
postponed it because preceding issues -- including debate about plans for
East 17th Street -- took the meeting past midnight.