The most bitter property battle in US history is about to start in California. Since buying 151 acres in the Santa Monica mountains in California way back in 2005, a progressive war has waged between the environmental groups backed by state agencies and the Dubliner, David Evans. Also known as the Edge, David wants to build five exclusive mansions on Malibu land known as Sweetwater Mesa, an open space that has always been under the protective eye of the state.
This week, The Edge will be facing his first stern test when campaigners from Sierra Club go to court to put an end to his grandiose plans to build the luxury mansions. And to back up Sierra Club is another group called ‘And Save Open Space,’ which also has significant experience with saving majestic environmental land against wealthy developers. It plans to file legal action next, if necessary
Local court administrators indicate that this battle between David and the environmentalist will probably last a decade. Many musicians have urged Edge of U2 to use common sense. Even if the Sierra Club loses it will appeal and that will probably take a few more years and this will be followed by a lawsuit by ‘And Save Open Space’ with a similar strategy.
Courts in Los Angeles are backed up solid and there is no way this case is going to be resolved any time soon. Bandmate Bono has been urged not to back up David Edge. So far Bono has stayed out of this controversy and has not said much, at least in public.
Most people are wondering why Edge is so firm on developing this land. He has millions of dollars and already owns many properties so people wonder why he is trying to destroy the gorgeous mountainside? So far, the legal cost for David have run up to $10 million but for a man who is worth more than $235 million, this is chump change.
In December of 2015, it looked like Edge had won when he made a proposal to water-down his property and make it environmentally friendly. However, Sierra Club wasn’t happy with that decision in court and filed a lawsuit against the California Coastal Commission stating that its decision to grant development rights to David Edge were illegal because it had ignored long standing coastal laws.
This part of California is frequented by thousands of hikers, mountaineers and cyclists who come here to enjoy its wildlife habitat and beautiful views of the ocean.