Marin County planners weigh George Lucas project

  • In this artist rendering released by Lucas Films, a drawing of the proposed Industry Light & Magic campus, is shown. Residents in a tony Marin County neighborhood just north of San Francisco have balked at filmmaker George Lucas' plans to build his next Industry Light & Magic campus in their upscale, rural community. The 275,000+ square foot complex with an outdoor sound stage and undergrounding parking for 250 cars would result in too much traffic, noise and environmental impacts to their bedroom community. (AP Photo/Lucas Films)

SAN RAFAEL — Marin County officials are weighing George Lucas' controversial plan to expand his digital empire on historic farmland.

The county planning commission is meeting Monday to consider filmmaker's proposal to build a 270,000-square-foot digital media production compound in an area known as Grady Ranch. It's not clear whether the commission will vote.

The complex would be next to Lucas' other filmmaking operations — Skywalker Ranch and Big Rock.

But neighbors say the giant complex with generate noise, traffic and harmful environmental impacts on pristine land about a half-hour drive north of the Golden Gate Bridge.

Lucas representatives say the Grady Ranch facility will create hundreds of jobs in Marin County and won't lead to the traffic and noise residents fear. They hope to break ground next year.

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