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Week in Review : MAJOR EVENTS, IMAGES AND PEOPLE IN ORANGE COUNTY NEWS : TRANSPORTATION : Irvine Gets the Boot Over Freeway Stance

July 13, 1986|Week in Review stories compiled by staff writers Gary Jarlson, Jerry Hicks and Jody Becker

Freeways were also making news during the week in another Orange County community.

The Irvine City Council, with a newly elected "slow-growth" majority being sworn in, reversed its previous position on building the controversial Foothill, Eastern and San Joaquin Hills freeways intended to handle future population explosions in the south part of the county.

A coalition of Councilmen Ray Catalano, Larry Agran and Ed Dornan--who won his seat in the June 3 election--pushed through a motion to notify the 10-city consortia set up to raise money for freeway construction that the city could not join unless Irvine residents voted to approve collection of fees required for membership.

In response, members of the consortia a few days later voted to boot Irvine out of the group.

Responded Agran: "Clearly, we can hardly be expelled from something we are obviously not members of."

Previously, more than 10,000 residents had protested the city's participation and, after two petition drives and a lawsuit, succeeded in putting Irvine's role on hold until the state Supreme Court decides whether the decision to impose the fees, and thus build the freeways, rests with the voters or the City Council.

Although the city's reversal will not have an immediate effect on the planned arteries, other conditions laid down by the council--including changes in route alignments, highway design and growth limits--angered county officials.

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