George Lucas' Neighbors Strike Back at Vast Plans
Lucasfilm says production facility won't stick out, but residents worried
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 4, 2012 9:35 AM CDT
In this artist rendering released by Lucas Films, a drawing of the proposed Industry Light & Magic campus, is shown.   (AP Photo/Lucas Films)

(Newser) – George Lucas has big dreams for his Lucas Valley estate—unfortunately, he's also facing big opposition from hundreds of his neighbors, who say his plans for a 263,701-square-foot production complex will ruin their quiet community, reports the San Francisco Examiner. "It will be bringing a lot of commercial activity into a very beloved, fragile valley, where the people really treasure the quiet rural environment," says the president of the Lucas Valley Estates Homeowners Association's board of directors.

The three-story building would cover an area the size of two football fields, and would include two film stages, a screening room, a restaurant, 20 suites for guests, a 4,000-square-foot "wine cave," and enough parking for 202 cars. "We want Lucasfilm to be here—the jobs, the tax base—but it's a matter of scale," says an environmental consultant who lives next-door to the proposed project. "There needs to be a balance." But a spokesperson for Lucasfilm says the new complex would have balance, and would be mostly out of view and surrounded by open space. "We pride ourselves on building unobtrusive, environmentally friendly campuses and on being good community citizens," says the Lucasfilm spokesperson.