Southern California is known for its freeways, but a new “natural highway” in Irvine is designed for a less common type of commuter: bobcats, coyotes, and foxes among them. They’re just some of the species to benefit from an expansive new wildlife corridor under development by FivePoint’s joint venture at the Orange County Great Park.
This 6-mile habitat corridor will help bridge the gap between the Santa Ana Mountains and Cleveland National Forest on one side, and the county’s coastal areas on the other. The 178-acre linkage will provide a vital pathway for animals to meet and mate, mitigating the biological challenges stemming from genetic isolation.
The commitment by FivePoint’s joint venture includes grading, planting, landscaping, and constructing crossings in and near the corridor.
“Habitat loss and fragmentation are the two main contributors to continuing declines in biodiversity,” said Tony Bomkamp, a biologist overseeing construction of the long-awaited project. “This landscape will create an unfettered path between two of the largest remaining wild spaces in Orange County—giving native species a wider range in which to feed, hunt and mate.”