The Edge Wins Approval For Malibu Mansions

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U2 guitarist The Edge has won approval to build five hilltop mansions in Malibu despite a long-running row with environmentalists over the effect on wildlife.

The Edge, whose real name is David Evans, and his team bought the land in 2005 and since then he has been trying to get the nod from the California Coastal Commission to be able to build on the site and live there.

The 5.2-acre project, which was initially rejected in 2011, was approved by the Coastal Commission at a meeting in Monterey on Thursday.

A statement from The Edge’s project team said the latest design takes up 43% less space than the one rejected in 2011 and would be built on a lower plateau, instead of high on the ridgeline to the west of Los Angeles.

Each home will have a footprint of less than 10,000 square feet (929 square metres), it said.

A report from staff members for the commission said the project is “designed to avoid or minimise significant disruption” of natural habitats.

But despite those changes, environmental groups and politicians such as state Senator Fran Pavley, a Democrat who often speaks in favour of green measures, opposed the development, saying it would infringe on wildlife.

State and federal park agencies are working with the National Wildlife Federation to invest millions of dollars to preserve corridors in the area for animals such as mountain lions and bobcats.

As a result, creating an island of homes within the area will “have potentially disastrous consequences,” she added.

Ms Pavley and environmental group Heal the Bay also opposed the Coastal Commission’s holding of the meeting in Monterey, 250 miles (402km) north of Malibu, saying it was too far away for people affected by the project to attend.

The Edge and his development team have dedicated 140 acres of their land in Malibu as open space, officials said.

The project still has to go before officials in Malibu and Los Angeles County to obtain permits.

Earlier this week U2 played two concerts in Paris where they paid tribute to the victims of the 13 November terror attacks.

They were joined on stage by the Eagles Of Death Metal who were performing during the attack at the Bataclan theatre.

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