Current Projects and Recent Decisions

Updated as of January 16, 2019

Most decisions are effective 15 days after the date of the City’s Notice of Decision unless an appeal is filed.

Administrative approvals by the Director of Community Development may be appealed to the Planning Commission. Planning Commission decisions may be appealed to the City Council. Any appeal must set forth in writing the specific grounds for the appeal and be directed to the City Clerk. Refer to the Municipal Code for more information regarding the appeals process, or contact the City Clerk at (949) 461-3420.

For information on a specific project, please contact the planner assigned to that project.

Planner Title Phone Email
Gayle Ackerman, AICP
Director of Community Development (949) 461-3463 Email Gayle Ackerman
Niki Wetzel, AICP Assistant Director of Community Development (949) 461-3479 Email Niki Wetzel
Ron Santos
Senior Planner (949) 461-3449 Email Ron Santos
Marie Luna Senior Planner (949) 461-3466

Email Marie Luna

Debbie Drasler Contract Senior Planner (949) 461-3466 Email Debbie Drasler
Jennifer Mansur, AICP
Associate Planner (949) 461-3472 Email Jennifer Mansur
Amanda Lauffer
Associate Planner (949) 461-3491 Email Amanda Lauffer

Current Projects

View a list of projects (PDF) that the Planning Division is currently processing. 

Nakase Nursery

Public Comment Period: August 20, 2019 to October 3, 2019

Click here for Draft Environmental Impact Report and Appendices

If you have any questions about this project or the following environmental information, please email Marie Luna, Senior Planner, or call at (949) 461-3466.

Description of Nature, Purpose, and Beneficiaries of Project:

Pursuant to Public Resources Code Sections 21091 and 21092 and California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) State Guidelines Section 15105 and 15087(a), notice is hereby given that a Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR) (State Clearinghouse No: 2018071035) for the Nakase Nursery/Toll Brothers Project (proposed Project) is available for public review during the public comment period (August 20, 2019 through October 3, 2019). The City of Lake Forest (City) has prepared the Draft EIR to analyze environmental impacts associated with implementation of the proposed Project; to discuss alternatives; and to propose mitigation measures for identified potentially significant impacts that will minimize, offset, or otherwise reduce or avoid those environmental impacts.

The applicant (Toll Brothers Southern California Division) proposes the approval of the Nakase Property Area Plan, which would establish guidelines for the future development of a master-planned community on the 122 acre Project site and would consist of the following: up to 675 single-family residential units; up to 101 senior affordable apartment units; an elementary school site accommodating up to 1,000 students; parks, open space, and habitat restoration area; an internal circulation system; and a multipurpose water quality basin. As part of the Project, a General Plan Amendment would change the land use designation from Business Park to Low-Medium, Medium, and High Density Residential, Public Facilities, Community Park/Open Space, and Regional Park/Open Space. Up to 10 of the residential units on the Project site would be permanent supportive housing (PSH) units. The Project proposes to change the Project site’s zoning classification from A1 (Agriculture) to Planned Community. A Vesting Tentative Tract Map, Development Agreement, and Planned Sign Program are also required. The Project Applicant intends to dedicate approximately 11.5 acres to the Saddleback Valley Unified School District for development of a public elementary school on the Project site.

Saddleback Church Expansion

Public Review Period from October 31, 2019 to December 2, 2019.

Initial Study - Mitigated Negative Declaration (ISMND) (PDF)

Appendices (PDF)

The project proposes several changes to the existing Saddleback Community Church Campus, including construction of a new two-story 92,391 square foot Worship Center, the addition of a 57-space surface parking lot, conversion of the existing Worship Center to an adult education center with classrooms for up to 903 students, new landscaping, extension of the existing on-site connector path, demolition or removal of existing modular buildings and other structures on-site, and other site improvements. The maximum developable height in the I (Industrial) zone is 45 feet. The majority of the Worship Center Building would be 42 feet tall or shorter; however, the applicant is requesting approval of an Alternate Development Standard to allow for a maximum allowable height of 50 feet above the Worship Center Building stage. The building would assume the function of principal assembly space for the Saddleback Community Church. The project would require approval of Site Development Permit 06-18-5176 by the City of Lake Forest Planning Commission. The Project would also require administrative approvals from the City for issuance of grading, building, and occupancy permits as well as connection permits from utility providers. 

If you have any questions about this project or the following environmental information, please email  Amanda Lauffer, Associate Planner or call at (949) 461-3491.

Recent Decisions

The following table is a list of recent decisions and corresponding appeal periods, when applicable.

Case Number Planner Approving Body Description Location Applicant Status
UP 11-19-5319 AL PC A request to establish a Planet Fitness Health Club with late night hours. 23633 El Toro Road Nick Pentico, DKMullin Architects Approved on January 9, 2020. Appeal period to end on January 27, 2020.
PSP 11-19-5318 JM PC A request for a Planned Sign Program for drive through signage and an illuminated light band for the Raising Cane's Restaurant building. 26782 Portola Parkway Mia Rondone, Permit Place Approved on January 9, 2020. Appeal period to end on January 27, 2020.
GPA 11-19-5323 GA PC A comprehensive update of the City’s General Plan including a Draft Environmental Impact Report to provide an updated policy framework and consolidated land use designations intended to guide future growth and development in Lake Forest.   Citywide City of Lake Forest At the December 5, 2019 Special Meeting, the Planning Commission recommended that the City Council certify the Draft Environmental Impact Report and approve the Draft General Plan.  The City Council will review the plan at a public hearing on February 18, 2020.
GPA 05-17-5033/ZC 05-17-5034/Area Plan 05-18-5166/VTTM 08-19-5302 ML PC/CC  A request to allow the development of a 122-acre site known as the Nakase Nursery into a development comprised of up to 675 single family residential units, 101 affordable units, an elementary school site for up to 1,000 students, and parks and open space.   Bake and Rancho Parkways to the west and north respectively, and Serrano Creek to the east Rick Nelson, Toll Brothers  Planning Commission recommended approval of the project to the City Council on November 14, 2019.  City Council to review project on January 21, 2020.