Both the city’s newest and one of its oldest thoroughfares have surprising changes for the unwary. The State Street promenade opened to cars on the Arlington block, and Anacapa Street, on its way to downtown Santa Barbara, went from two lanes to a single lane between Mission and Micheltorena streets.
Earlier this morning, Behdad Gharagozli unrolled a metal tape measure as he directed a forklift driver to set water-filled road barricades across the West Victoria Street intersection. State Street’s promenade now hangs a left at Victoria, which closed to cars to allow the growth of restaurant parklets, anchored by the Public Market at the far end of the block.
Gharagozli explained they wanted bicyclists coming down State from Sola Street to be able to see pedestrians, who’d previously been hidden by the boxed palm trees marking the intersection. Public Works also wanted a clearer path through the barriers in the southbound lane to keep the bikes from encountering the motorists who can now turn right from East Victoria and Arlington Avenue, heading northward on the 1300 block of State Street.