Sunday, May 27 , 2018, 10:50 am | Fair 62º


Local News

Opponents Urging Santa Barbara Council to Say No to BevMo

An appeal to the proposed liquor store filed by a group of residents, parents and business owners will be heard Tuesday

The Santa Barbara City Council on Tuesday will hear an appeal to the proposed Beverages & More Inc. — commonly known as BevMo — for State Street, which was approved in May by the city’s Architectural Board of Review.

A group of community members, calling themselves Breathe Easy Santa Barbara and represented by attorney Marc Chytilo, filed an appeal focusing on the liquor store’s proposed location, 3052 State St.

A retail use such as BevMo! could have traffic, noise and air quality effects on nearby areas, Chytilo wrote in a news release.

The building, formerly Thomasville Furniture, is slated to be kept mostly the same, though the rear would be changed to allow access to delivery trucks and more parking spaces.

Residents from the San Roque and Samarkand neighborhoods, local business owners, and Peabody Charter School parents and administrators have opposed the store, citing concerns about traffic, parking, noise and the economic impact to smaller liquor stores and supermarkets.

The plan includes demolishing a detached warehouse and decreasing the site’s total square footage. In addition, the landscaping and parking on the site would be changed to include 35 parking spaces, removal and planting of trees, and new lighting.

Breathe Easy Santa Barbara’s appeal also cites concerns about Upper State Street design guidelines and the lack of an extensive environmental review process, such as that required by the California Environmental Quality Act.

The staff report on the agenda item states that no additional review is needed, as the net new trips created by the project wouldn’t exceed the city’s standard threshold of traffic impact to nearby intersections, and that there would not be significant impact from noise, air quality or parking.

Particularly worried about possible traffic effects are the principal and some of the parents of Peabody Charter School.

Principal Kate Ford sent an e-mail to parents and staff informing them of Tuesday’s meeting, saying she wants people to know the status of the project.

“As with the medical marijuana dispensary issue, I just wanted my parents to know what’s going on,” she told Noozhawk. “I would love it if more people and parents got more involved in this town.” 

Though she took no position in the e-mail, she said she has concerns about increased traffic near the school, which is a block away from the proposed store site.

She said construction, delivery trucks and customers coming and going would have significant effects, especially in an area where traffic is already a daily issue and children frequently walk to school.

Tuesday’s appeal hearing will begin at 2 p.m. in the Council Chambers of City Hall, 735 Anacapa St. in Santa Barbara.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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