Fence to Deter Pooping in Creek, City Hopes

Site Became Dumping Ground for Those Reluctant to Use Portable Toilets

Santa Barbara City Hall will spend $85,000 erecting new, bolt-cutter-resistant, hard-to-climb eight-foot fence around a portion of Laguna Creek by Garden and Yanonali streets to keep nearby homeless campers and individuals from the labor line from pooping there. “You don’t need to do any DNA testing. It’s there. You can see it,” said creeks restoration manager Cameron Benson, who also said that human feces contain pathogens that pose a definite threat to human health.

Laguna Creek runs mostly underground from the Riviera, past the labor line, and into the lagoon where Mission Creek pours under State Street. There it sits, and according to nearby property owner Tony Romasanta, generating an odious stench. For the most part, this septic stew is constrained from flowing to the ocean by a sandy berm, but on occasion that berm is breached.

Benson said he hopes the new fencing will discourage people from using the creek as a latrine and encourage them to use the two portable toilets provided by city instead. Currently, City hall pays Service Master to clean the area twice a week.

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