Coveted oceanfront land in Ventura County will become a nature preserve.
The City Council approved the development Tuesday night after hearing years of community and environmental concerns. Instead of building a hotel and a golf course, the development would be made into a conservation area and preserve open space.
Ventura Country Club would be the property’s anchor business. The property is the fourth golf course in Ventura County and the first on the coast.
The development is being sold by the City of Ventura to the National Trust for Historic Preservation as a historic site.
If built, the development would join the Santa Rosa and La Puente Hills sites at the top of the hillside east of Ventura Boulevard in a community that is the eastern edge of a large urban growth area with more than 12,000 homes, 6,000 jobs and an estimated population of 19,000.
More than 20,000 people live in the area.
The proposal will begin to move to the Ventura City Council’s Land Use Committee Tuesday evening at 7 p.m.
The City Council will hear the proposal again at its first meeting in December.
It’s also been a fight to preserve the community’s character.
Developers proposed two hotels and a golf course to the City Council. Then city staffers took on the task of studying that proposal.
The council has given some concessions, which allowed developers to build hotels with green roofs. The developers also have agreed to build a small public park nearby.
The developers want the city to develop a greenbelt around the development and give the community another option for recreation.
A greenbelt is a buffer zone that keeps development out of an area.
“What makes this so special is it’s not just a place to be, but it is also a place to be,” said Gary Smith, vice president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “It’s a place to play golf, but it can also be a place to recreate, recreate, recreate.”
Smith described the land as “a place that is very close to nature.”
“This is really the first time that we’ve looked at a golf course that has this sort of relationship to nature,” he said.