The San Diego region has no shortage of homes next to fire-prone hillsides covered in highly flammable chaparral and grasslands. The undulating, arid topography has carried flames at mind-boggling speeds in some of the state’s most destructive blazes.
Now elected officials in the county want to add another roughly 10,000 homes in areas largely labeled by Cal Fire as posing a “very-high” fire hazard.
Those units would come in the form of eight new sprawling housing projects, which have drawn widespread opposition and even lawsuits.
The development, county supervisors have said, is badly needed and in each case, developers have laid out exhaustive fire-prevention...