CARLSBAD — The long awaited Poinsettia 61 project is underway.
Construction crews began work about three weeks ago with the first steps of constructing the Poinsettia bridge, which will connect the western path of Poinsettia Lane to El Camino Real.
The plan to connect Poinsettia Lane was years in the making and spurred by a lawsuit North County Advocates filed in 2015 over the General Plan, California Environmental Quality Act and the Climate Action Plan.
The city of Carlsbad, along with Lennar Homes, Friends of Aviara, Friends of the Buena Vista Reservoir, Preserve Calavera and North County Advocates settled the suit and presented the plan to residents in early 2017 and it was approved by the City Council months later.
The plan includes Lennar Homes constructing 123 detached condos along Ambrosia Lane, finishing the Poinsettia Lane connection, and adding a 3.1-acre park at the Buena Vista Reservoir and about 25 acres of open space to the city’s Habitat Management Plan at Veterans Park and off of Poinsettia Lane. Additionally, the bridge was included to ensure a wildlife corridor runs underneath.
“Lennar has received their rough grading permit,” Carlsbad Senior Planner Teri Delcamp said. “They are beginning to grade the project. The connection for Poinsettia Lane will be built along with the rest of the project over the next couple of years.”
To address environmental impacts of the project, Lennar Homes protects habitat in the project area and restores habitat near Aviara Community Park and the future Veterans Park, according to the city. About six acres of land is added to the city’s habitat preserves, beyond the amount already in city plans.
The city also reclassified about three acres of land currently slated to be developed into a park as habitat preserve. The land is located at the future site of Veterans Park off Faraday Avenue near Cannon Road.
To make up for the 3-acre decrease in developable parkland at the Veterans Park, the city changed the use of a 3-acre abandoned reservoir site near the corner of Buena Vista Way and Highland Drive from housing to park land. Lennar Homes will pay for and build the park, while the city will maintain it.
Under the plan, 5,970 acres of natural lands have already been preserved for plants and animals, according to the city. Its goal is to set aside 6,478 acres of natural habitat by the time the city is built out.
Steve Puterski covers Carlsbad and Vista. For tips or story ideas, contact him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @StevePuterski.