Completing North Irvine’s Master Plan

How the vision for your Village is being realized

If you live in Orchard Hills, Portola Springs, Woodbury, Eastwood or Stonegate, you are part of Irvine’s Northern Sphere. It’s an area defined by its natural beauty, dramatic views of the mountains, and hundreds of acres of avocado orchards surrounding thoughtfully planned neighborhoods.

And it’s all part of the Irvine Master Plan.

The Master Plan was crafted by the Irvine Company in the 1960s and later endorsed by residents as they voted to create the all-new city of Irvine in 1971 – now 50 years ago.

The northern one-third of the Master Plan (known as the Northern Sphere) originally fell outside city limits. City and county planners realized the importance of bringing this area into Irvine’s jurisdiction to ensure the Master Plan could guide its future growth.

A significant milestone was reached in 2002 when the city formally incorporated the Northern Sphere area into the city and its Master Plan.

This allowed for the lifestyle residents of the Northern Sphere’s five primary villages enjoy today. The area now includes nearby retail centers that host valued shops like Trader Joe’s and Zov’s Irvine. It led to the creation of seven new award-winning schools. And it ensured the preservation of 4,600 acres – 60% of the Northern Sphere – as parks and open space. Importantly, it also identified precisely how many homes could be built.

And it’s all adjacent to Irvine’s 20,000-acre Northern Open Space Preserve, which extends to the Cleveland National Forest.

Celebrating Irvine’s 50th anniversary as one of America’s most successful master-planned cities


“We have conceived the City of Irvine as a city of villages, each built within the human scale and each enhanced by landscape features to give it individuality, a uniqueness and a sense of place.”

– The Irvine Master Plan, 1960