Great Park Neighborhoods Expansion: Balancing Housing and Retail

Lisa Mailhot  |  December 18, 2023


Great Park Neighborhoods Expansion: Balancing Housing and Retail


In the heart of Orange County, Irvine's Great Park Neighborhoods are on the verge of significant expansion. A recent news report by Hanna Kang from the Orange County Register has shed light on the addition of 766 new residential units to this vibrant community, stirring up both excitement and concern among residents.

The Development Plans

The development plans include two primary residential projects within the Great Park Neighborhoods. First, 684 new condominiums will be situated near Great Park Ice, sprawling across approximately 61 acres. The second project, Cadence Park, will feature 82 units spread across 15 acres. Although construction has not yet commenced for the homes near Great Park Ice, the rough grading of the Cadence Park site is already underway.

The Retail Dilemma

While these housing developments are poised to reshape the Great Park Neighborhoods, some residents have voiced their concerns. A resident challenge raised issues about a lack of nearby shopping facilities and fears of overcrowding, particularly around Cadence Park. The proposed retail center, which is set to be completed before the new homes are occupied, aims to address these concerns.

However, residents like Phillip Pham argue that the Great Park Neighborhoods need more retail options, pointing out the disparity compared to other parts of Irvine. They emphasize the importance of having convenient dining and shopping choices nearby. Despite the planned retail center being within a mile of the new residences, concerns about its size persist, as it is significantly smaller than the Woodbury Town Center.


School Capacity and Enrollment

Apart from the retail concerns, parents in the area are worried about overcrowding in local schools. The new residential units are expected to send more students to schools like Cadence Park K-8 School and Portola High School. The city insists that the Irvine Unified School District is equipped to handle this increase in student enrollment, with available capacity.

The Path Forward

As Irvine continues to grow and evolve, the expansion of Great Park Neighborhoods represents both opportunities and challenges. The need for more housing units in the region is clear, but residents are rightfully passionate about maintaining a balanced and vibrant community.


The Great Park Neighborhoods' expansion is a topic of much discussion among Orange County residents. It's essential to find the right balance between residential growth and the development of essential retail and educational facilities. As the city plans for the future, it will be crucial to address these concerns and ensure that the Great Park Neighborhoods continue to thrive as a welcoming and desirable community.

If you're considering a move to Orange County and want to explore real estate options in this evolving landscape, let's connect. Orange County offers a diverse range of neighborhoods, and I'm here to help you find the perfect fit for your needs and preferences.


Reference: Hundreds of new homes to be added to the Great Park Neighborhoods by Hanna Kang, Orange County Register, December 16, 2023.

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