Orange represents parcels in the Housing Element; other considered sites are tagged by address. | Credit: City of Goleta

The City of Goleta released the latest update of the city’s Housing Element on Thursday, which includes the parcels that caused dozens of residents to write and speak in person to object to the potential overcrowding and a handful to praise the housing concepts. Time is short for public comment on the revised document, only until August 17, before the city files it again with the state Housing and Community Development department.

In brief, Goleta found itself needing to add 637 units after the last comment letter from the state put into doubt some of the parcels targeted for rezones to higher-density housing, which translates to lower-income housing in the state’s eyes. City planning staff has succeeded in fulfilling the needed number with a surplus should any fail to be built to the maximum the zoning allows, an outcome expected for some parcels. Already in Goleta’s planning pipeline are at least two lower-income housing projects that cannot be added into this Housing Element for various reasons, but they are expected to deliver several hundred new lower-income apartments.

While working to fulfill the state’s demands for much-needed housing, the city can only zone for sufficient housing. Like other jurisdictions writing Housing Elements, Goleta cannot make any landowner build. During the three meetings the city held on this draft version, some landowners stated that they appreciated the rezone but intended to build to the city’s 20 percent inclusionary standard for lower- and moderate-income housing, not 100 percent lower income.

For the properties most in contention, the outcome was as follows:

7264 Calle Real, aka Kenwood Village — RS (residential single-family)/AG (agriculture) to RH (residential high-density). RS equals 12 units per acre. RH allows 20-30 units.

625 Dara Road — RS to RM (residential medium density). Medium density allows 15-20 units per acre.

7190 Hollister Avenue — RM to RH. For the adjacent two parcels to the east of this property — CG (general commercial)/RM to RH. Here, landowner Daniel Hochman averred he intended to build senior housing, which should create less intense use of the heavily trafficked Storke/Hollister intersection given the number of units possible at these 17 acres. His business partner, Derek Westen, stated a master plan for the property would allow them to site the housing to avoid environmentally sensitive areas and keep some of the views of the mountains from Hollister Avenue.

The full Housing Element can be found at the city’s website here, as well as the staff presentations that show parcel locations, acreage, and other important information. City staff is available to answer questions by email at For the city’s Spanish-speakers, Goleta’s Spanish engagement specialist, Marcos Martinez, can be contacted at (805) 562-5500 or


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