Goleta’s Sumida Gardens Apartments Awarded

American Planning Association Recognizes Developer’s Perseverance

The American Planning Association (APA) awarded Goleta’s Sumida Gardens the prestigious Planning Achievement Award.

The ceremony took place at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Ventura on April 3, with Congresspersons as well as Goleta city electeds and staff in attendance.

Sumida Gardens is a 200-unit apartment complex, which includes 34 subsidized apartments, won in the “Hard-won” category, for vision and perseverance. Its unique designs, meticulous planning, environmental safety features, and affordable housing availability were cited. But this achievement has taken some time.

Towbes Group Inc., a Santa Barbara development and construction company, purchased the former La Sumida Nursery site in the 1990s, but its aim to build an apartment complex was delayed due to jurisdiction changes—in particular, Goleta’s incorporation as a city. In late 2007, construction plans were finally approved by the City Council and Redevelopment Agency, and the complex was built in August 2009.

“Sumida Gardens now has recognition from the city,” said Jaime Valdez, senior management analyst in charge of neighborhood services and public safety for the Redevelopment Agency. “The award has gotten the community together as a whole.”

Sumida Gardens is located off the 217 freeway near Hollister Avenue. For further information regarding the complex, visit

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