Water Polo Facility, Field House, and Parking Structure Design Plans To Go Before The Planning Commission

Above photo from pg. 5 of the Western Sector Area Design Package.


Planning Commission Meeting – May 7, 2020 at 5:30 p.m.
Staff report
Link to eComment

The Planning Commission will review the design plans and provide feedback for a large athletic complex that is planned for the Great Park. Irvine City Council first approved the proposal to partner with FivePoint and build the sports complex on City land in October 2019. Public participation for this meeting is limited to listening by phone or viewing via WebEx. For easier participation, Watchdog asked the City to consider using the available technologies and televise the Planning Commission meetings on ICTV and LiveStream.


This section of the Great Park is next to FivePoint X – a private commercial development that will include hotels, extended-stay hospitality, food and beverage businesses. Inside the Great Park the Western Sector contains the Great Park Ice facility, the Visitor Center Plaza and Palm Court Arts Complex. Pretend City Children’s Museum is under agreement for the one remaining site.

The facilities under design review for construction on the public land are a water polo facility consisting of two buildings including the headquarters for the USA Water Polo organization and three exterior pools, a field house complex consisting of three gymnasium buildings and a food and concession building and a parking structure for 1,900 cars.

The $250 million needed for the project will come from the Great Park Neighborhoods Community Facility District (CFD) funding mechanism. This is a special tax paid by property owners in the Great Park neighborhoods. An addendum to the environmental impact report is being prepared and will be presented to the Council at a later date. This project is exempt from zoning ordinance requirements because it is considered a public project. An amendment to the zoning ordinance for city directed projects was approved at a June 2019 Planning Commission meeting and this project falls under the exemption. “The intent of this amendment is to clarify the procedure for City Council-directed projects and to eliminate the need for projects to seek approval from other hearing bodies prior to implementation.”

“Staff has proposed amending the Zoning Ordinance to exempt City-directed projects, which would include projects on any City-owned or controlled land and in any City-owned or controlled buildings, from the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance. Eliminating the need for the second approval process would streamline the implementation of City projects, offering time and cost savings and guaranteeing that the project approved by the City Council is faithfully implemented in a timely manner.”

Source: City staff report, Planning Commission- 6/6/19


Read the Western Sector Development Review staff report here. A snapshot is below.

  • Water Polo Facility – Located on the southwest corner of Hornet and Corsair consists of two buildings, and three outdoor pools. One for community recreational and swim instruction use; a second for water polo practice; and, a third for competitions. The competition pool is surrounded by 1,060 permanent seats and an additional 860 temporary stadium seats.
  • Field House Complex – Located on the southeast corner of Hornet and Corsair, is a two-story, multi-sport gymnasium facility, composed of three buildings with a mix of sports courts, training and locker rooms, administrative offices and classroom, and meeting space.
  • Parking Structure – Located at the northeast intersection of Corsair and Phantom, it is a three-level parking structure with 1,900 parking spaces. The structure is approximately 30 feet high, with two elevator towers at the northwest and northeast corners reaching 40 feet high.