Metro East Mixed – Use Overlay District Expansion

Assigned Planner: Ali Pezeshkpour, AICP — Principal Planner
Phone: (714) 647-5882

Updated: April 1, 2021

Current status

  • On November 2, 2018, the new Metro East Mixed Use (MEMU) Overlay Zone went into effect. The new MEMU includes the original (2007) area and the new (2018) expanded area, as well as amendments to update and modernize the MEMU development standards and sub-zones. The final document can be accessed by visiting the link below.

Why did the City expand the Metro East Mixed-Use (MEMU) overlay district boundaries?

  • The goal of updating and extending the MEMU boundaries is to create new opportunities for residential, mixed-use, and commercial developments along First Street in the project area. The effort also includes updating the existing MEMU document to refine development standards and allowable uses in the MEMU area.

Is the City taking my property? Will First Street be widened like Bristol Street?

  • The project will not require "taking" of properties. It is an effort to provide property owners in the MEMU area additional opportunities to develop or redevelop properties in the project area.

Where is the project area?

  • The original (2007) Metro East Mixed-Use (MEMU) Overlay District comprises approximately 200 acres located immediately east of the Santa Ana (I-5) Freeway and immediately west of Costa Mesa (SR-55) Freeway and is bounded by I-5 on the west and south, Tustin Avenue on the east, and East Sixth Street on the north. The new (2018) MEMU Overlay Zone expansion area added an additional 33.52 acres or approximately 48 parcels to the project area, extending west primarily along First Street, generally bound by I-5 on the east, Grand Avenue on the west, East Chestnut Avenue on the south, and Fourth Street on the north. The approved Elan mixed-use development project is located on an approximately 6.4-acre site at 1660 East First Street fronting First Street between Lyon Avenue and Elk Lane, within the proposed MEMU Overlay Zone expansion area.

What happened as part of the project?

  • The  project included expansion of the boundaries of the MEMU Overlay District, modification of development standards, an amendment to the existing General Plan, an amendment to the existing zoning code, and development of a mixed-use multi-family residential and commercial project. Under the  project, the development capacity remains the same within the expanded Overlay Zone area. The project includes redevelopment of the old Elks Club site into two mixed-use (residential and commercial) structures: one seven-story “wrap” building and one five-story building with two levels of underground parking. The project includes 603 residential units and approximately 8,500 square feet of commercial uses at the ground floor, and would include pools, spas, courtyards, public open space, fitness rooms, and other amenities for the residents. The project would result in a residential density of 93.75 dwelling units per acre, and the proposed development would be within the capacity established by the MEMU Overlay District. Onsite parking would include 1,209 parking spaces. Additional details are provided in the Draft SEIR, below.

Important documents

Notice of Availability (NOA)

Draft Subsequent Environmental Impact Report (SEIR)

Combined Appendices (document does not contain Appendix D)

Appendix D

Final EIR Executive Summary

Final EIR (Full Document)

Mitigation Monitoring and Reporting Program (MMRP)

Important dates:

Draft SEIR public review period began: June 12, 2018
Planning Commission public hearing: July 23, 2018 at 5:30 pm at City Council Chambers, 22 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana, CA
Draft SEIR public review period ended: July 27, 2018
City Council first reading: August 21, 2018 at 5:45 pm at City Council Chambers, 22 Civic Center Plaza, Santa Ana, CA

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