Santa Barbara City Council unanimously voted to form a new committee to work with community members regarding the Mission Canyon Bridge project, which was sent back to the drawing board in August 2021 after councilmembers rejected the proposal, saying the project should have more thought put toward bicycle and pedestrian mobility before moving forward.
After the rejection six months ago, city staff recommended forming an ad hoc committee to work directly with the community on designs that included “improved pedestrian and bicycle” pathways through the Mission Canyon corridor.
Staff recommended a four-person committee, potentially made up of city councilmembers and representatives from the Historic Landmarks Commission, Mission Heritage Trail Association, and Coalition to Preserve Mission Canyon. Councilmembers Kristen Sneddon and Eric Friedman volunteered to serve as the first two members, and they will work to determine the rest of the group over the next six months, with the committee scheduled to begin meeting in August 2022.
“I would be very interested in serving on the committee. It’s in the heart of District 4, and I have worked with many of these stakeholders in the initial process and for years,” Sneddon said.
Friedman said he thought there was a need for improvements in “mobility for pedestrians and bicyclists,” which could be made while still maintaining the historic character of the area.
The committee would be viewed as a workgroup of sorts, meeting with community stakeholders and providing recommendations for proposal options that would allow the city to move forward with grant applications in the next year.
All members of the City Council supported the new direction of the Mission Canyon Bridge project.