It’s moving day in Lake Forest on Friday, as City staff moves mountains of paperwork, records and other critical items into the City’s first permanent home. The City’s new Civic Center campus, at 100 Civic Center Dr., includes a senior center, community center, 200-seat performing arts center/council chambers and City Hall.
The Craftsman design of the new campus reflects input from community members. who placed a premium on celebrating and preserving natural open space and habitat, expansive views of the Saddleback Mountains, and sensitive habitats and riparian areas along Serrano Creek.
The Center will serve as Lake Forest’s “100-year home” and will be the civic heart and social center of the City. Since its incorporation in 1991, Lake Forest has leased three City Hall spaces, moving into its current and last temporary home in 2004.
“It was the last missing piece of the community,” City Manager Debra Rose said of the campus. “We created this space in-line with our residents’ feedback, and we did it without incurring any debt to the City.”
The $72 million project was paid primarily with developer fees, allowing the City to keep its unique title of the largest debt-free City in the state.
The Civic Center will officially open to the public at noon on Monday, December. 16. The City gets right back to business, holding a regular City Council meeting Tuesday evening and a special session on Thursday. The City will host an open house from 9 a.m. to noon on January 11.