The California Coastal Commission (Commission) has approved a Coastal Development Permit for the proposed Sunset Ridge Park, thus allowing the City of Newport Beach (City) to build a much-needed, public park with ball fields in West Newport.
Newport Beach Mayor Nancy Gardner said, “We are ecstatic over the news and are grateful for the Commission’s approval. The project will take a vacant, barely accessible piece of land and create a park with places for kids to play sports and places for people of all ages to relax and look out onto the Pacific Ocean.”
The 13.7-acre project site is located at the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Superior Avenue. The Sunset Ridge Park plans include a baseball diamond that overlaps in area with two soccer fields, a children’s playground, a grass warm-up field, pedestrian paths around the perimeter of the park, view areas, a shade structure, and a restroom/storage facility.
“The City purchased the property from Caltrans in 2006 and we began planning and designing the park in 2008,” explained Council Member Steve Rosansky, whose district includes the site of the future park. “We held a series of public meetings and heard what West Newport residents, parents, local youth sports coaches, and other interested citizens wanted in the park. We believe the plan balances those needs. I am very happy that the years of planning are over and our vision will become a real, much-loved park.”
The construction start date is yet to be determined and construction cost estimates are subject to final design work and bidding. Coastal Development Permits generally have a two-year window to start construction.
City Manager Dave Kiff said, “This has been a long and challenging process for both the City and the Commission and we are grateful that our good project was ultimately approved. The Commission has approved two of our projects this summer – Marina Park back in June and now Sunset Ridge Park. The summer of 2012 will be one to remember for us. Two major projects before the Commission and two successes."