Edged out as locals oppose development

U2 GUITARIST The Edge is facing local opposition to his plans to construct a development of luxury houses in an exclusive area of Malibu, California.

The performer, real name David Evans, wants to build a 156-acre development which would include five houses including his own. The properties would range in size from 7,317 to 12,004 square feet.

Even though a range of conservationist techniques would be used in the construction phase, locals are not happy including potential neighbours in an exclusive area nearby and the Santa Monica Mountain Conservancy.

They say the properties would diminish the beautiful skyline and would be visible from the coastline and are also unhappy at the disruption the construction phase would cause.

The Edge and his wife Morleigh Steinberg bought the five lots in 2006 with Irish developer Derek Quinlan for €6.7 million.

The performer says fears over the size and scope of the project they have in mind are overblown, and that when people actually look at the plans, “they completely mellow out”.

“We just had this dream of building a house that was in perfect harmony with these hills,” he told the New York Times. “We see it as something that could be a bench mark of sustainability.”

He said the project would “respect and honour the landscape”, and set a new standard for building in remote areas by incorporating the environment rather than mowing it down.

The designer of the houses, Wallace Cunningham has said his goal was to make them emulate their natural surroundings. To that end, for example, each property has a copper roof, fashioned to resemble fluttering leaves.

The future of the project is in the hands of the California Coastal Commission that has jurisdiction over most developments near that coastline and it is expected to rule on the proposal this summer.

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