Golf-course redevelopment is a terrific solution to providing new housing in the middle of town. They will work out the kinks like building enough roads.

A judge’s ruling halted construction this week of the 536-unit Junipers development in Rancho Peñasquitos — and could complicate and delay approvals of other dense housing projects across San Diego.

Superior Court Judge Ronald Frazier nullified an analysis of how the Junipers would affect nearby traffic, noise and wildfire threats, saying it had failed to account for two large nearby housing projects. In a ruling that made final a tentative ruling he issued last week, Frazier halted construction of the Junipers, where 36 units are complete, and said it can’t resume until the analysis is redone to account for the long-term presence of the 331-unit Millennium PQ and 826-unit Trails at Carmel Mountain Ranch.

The resident group that had sued to stop the Junipers called the ruling a victory for San Diego’s neighborhoods because it will require developers to provide more robust mitigation when they build impactful, dense projects.

In particular, the residents want Junipers developer Lennar Homes to pay for building more evacuation routes for their wildfire-prone area.

“Our goal in bringing this lawsuit forward is to require the city of San Diego to perform environmental review to address wildfire impacts on redevelopment in our area,” the PQ-NE Action Group said in a statement. “We are very pleased with the final ruling.”

The city and Lennar, which declined to comment Tuesday, could appeal to a higher court.

Or Lennar could settle with the residents, for instance by agreeing to construct additional evacuation routes.

If the ruling isn’t overturned on appeal, attorneys for Lennar and the city say it could have far-reaching impacts on how government agencies must analyze the effects dense housing projects might have on traffic, noise and wildfire threats.

“It would potentially grind development to a halt,” Deputy City Attorney Ben Syz told Judge Frazier in court last Thursday. “The city needs certainty as to what it’s looking at and what it’s analyzing.”

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