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Posted on March 14 at 6:16 p.m.
It's important for all Goleta City and SB County residents who enjoy visiting Goleta County Beach Park to understand the forces involved in the Goleta Beach 2.0 Plan. With that in mind, I'd encourage everyone to take a few minutes to view the video produced by The Surf Rider Foundation on the history of Surfer's Point in Ventura. See video at: http://surferspoint.org/.
In the mid to late 1990's, severe winter storms and waves battered the Surfer's Point area destroying sections of the City and Ventura County Fairgrounds-owned parking lots and damaging sections of the CA State Parks-owned Omer Rains bike path. At the time the bike path was constructed, CA State Parks became aware that CA Coastal Commission (CCC) policies for armoring the coastline were changing and CCC would likely not permit CA State Parks to rebuild the bike path in its original footprint. For several years, tensions between the City of Ventura, the Ventura County Fairgrounds and local CA State Parks officials were strained. Each agency received considerable public grief about the unsightly area and lost facilities, but no one had a solution.
In early 2000, a working group formed that included reps from the City of Ventura, The Ventura County Fairgrounds, CA State Parks, the CCC, Surf Rider Foundation, bicyclists groups and local elected officials. After several years of meetings, coastal erosion studies, a successful buried cobble demonstration project and work with engineering consultants, the Surfer's Point Managed Retreat Project was developed. After extensive public review and input, the final project plan was approved by the CCC by unanimous vote and has been recognized as a model plan for local coastal protection and recreational facilities development.
As the former CA State Parks representative to the Surfer's Point Managed Retreat Project Working Group and Goleta resident, I believe that Alternative 2 offers the best option for protecting the existing facilities at Goleta Beach County Park, while also giving the County time to assess various treatments for beach nourishment that are consistent with California Coastal Commission Policy. It's clear that no one agency has enough money to make Goleta Beach County Park perfect for everyone. But what we do have is time.
On Protect and Restore Goleta Beach
Posted on July 30 at 9:35 a.m.
While LA Lakers star Kobe Bryant's main reason to come to SB may have been to teach kids the fundamentals of basketball & life, he did a lot more. Kobe, his wife Vanessa and members of their Kobe & Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation (#KVBFF) took time to visit our CASA of Santa Barbara County's office to meet staff, learn about the great work that CASA of SB is doing for foster kids in our area and to hear the personal stories of two incredible CASA youth too! Together, Kobe and Vanessa were wonderful and gracious guests, they were genuinely attentive, caring and did not leave before making a commitment to support CASA of SB and visit again soon! Thanks to Kobe and Vanessa for making a difference in our CASA kid's lives.
On Basketball Stars Come to S.B.
Posted on July 18 at 11:40 a.m.
Goleta Beach Park is a wonderful place. It offers its 1.5M annual visitors a place to recreate, enjoy the beach, fish from the pier or onshore, surf, kayak and ride stand-up paddle boards and personal watercraft, launch a vessel from the park's hoist or via the park's dirt parking lot and beach ramp, have a picnic or share a meal at a local restaurant with million dollar views at an affordable price.
The beach park was was built on a sand spit and at the outfall of a creek and lagoon. With a channelized creek aiming its winter storm energy at the park on one end and an exposed unprotected coastline scouring its shores -- if left alone the park will disappear in time.
So the question for our community (residents, beach park users, business owners, county staff, consultants and elected officials) is how do we protect the park and its popular amenities to the fullest extent possible. The easy approach is to load our collective emotionally charged bows with arrows and fire away at the other side -- aiming to blame those in favor of total park protection or those who seek another option for their dumb ideas. I suggest we all try another approach.
As a good faith effort in protecting Goleta Beach Park for future generations, I'd ask everyone to take a look at project Alternative 2 – Temporary Revetment Retention and Pilot Coastal Protection Projects with Beach Nourishment. As a former member of the working group for the Surfer's Point Managed Retreat Project in Ventura, a community that works together for a common goal has the potential to do great things. Yes, I know. Goleta Beach Park is no Surfer's Point. But there are many similarities -- a popular beach, free parking, easy access and very limited funds to make it better.
In addition, I would encourage everyone to request SB County staff and officials to broaden their Goleta Beach Park 2.0 Draft EIR to include the installation of an experimental beach cobble/sand dune stabilization project, mitigation options for replacing lost park facilities including parking spaces and beach boat launching access and parking and a requirement that the entire project include the upgrading of the park for ADA accessibility. After all, the park does belong to all county residents and members of our disabled community deserve the right to use the beach too.
R RojasGoleta, CA
On Which Way for Goleta Beach?
Join The Independent for this St. Patty's day stroll! Read More
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