By DAVID R. CHAN | The Daily Meal
Irvine is a city of roughly 250,000 people. Visually, it is unlike any other city of its size in the United States. Irvine was built from scratch beginning in the early 1970s as a planned community on parts of the previously undeveloped Irvine Ranch, which comprised 15 percent of the total land area of Orange County. Irvine is a city with no downtown business district, and with no stores or businesses fronting the city’s major thoroughfares. For that matter, there is no street parking permitted on the major boulevards, meaning no corner restaurants, gas stations, or stores. Rather, all retail activity is confined to about 30 neighborhood shopping centers whose buildings are generally set back from the street, with signage strictly controlled and not particularly visible.
Photo by sputnik / Flickr via The Daily Meal