Pixel Tracker

Monday, December 10 , 2018, 7:19 pm | Fair 52º

 
 
 
 

CHP Sets Sights on Earl Warren Showgrounds in Santa Barbara for New Station

Officials confirm law enforcement agency is moving on from western Goleta location for headquarters replacement

The California Highway Patrol is looking at Earl Warren Showgrounds as a possible site for a new headquarters to replace its cramped and aging station at 6465 Calle Real in Goleta. Click to view larger
The California Highway Patrol is looking at Earl Warren Showgrounds as a possible site for a new headquarters to replace its cramped and aging station at 6465 Calle Real in Goleta. (Sam Goldman / Noozhawk photo)

The California Highway Patrol is looking hard at Earl Warren Showgrounds in Santa Barbara as the site for a new station to replace its cramped and aging local headquarters in Goleta, Noozhawk has learned.

CHP Officer Jonathan Gutierrez, a local spokesman, told Noozhawk that the agency is in the beginning stages of trying to purchase some of the showgrounds land at fair-market value.

The 34-acre Earl Warren Showgrounds at 3400 Calle Real is managed by the 19th Agricultural District Association, an agency of the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

The CHP would have to purchase land there through the state Department of General Services, which cautioned that it was nowhere near a done deal.

“The Department of General Services continues to search for the best possible site for the California Highway Patrol,” DGS spokeswoman Jacqueline Cummings told Noozhawk.

“It would be premature to speculate on a particular site, as no formal decision has been made.”

The state has said that the CHP’s one-acre facility at 6465 Calle Real, built in 1982, isn’t up to seismic safety and other state requirements.

Gutierrez said the CHP is no longer pursuing a western Goleta site that was subject to fierce opposition from neighborhood residents, who said the proposed five-acre property north of Hollister Avenue between Las Armas and Via Jero roads was too close to Ellwood School, the recently built Hideaway residential development and a planned senior living community.

Although its focus is on Earl Warren, Gutierrez noted that his agency is still searching for other potential sites in case the new Plan A doesn’t work out.

The CHP wants to find a new location for a station as soon as possible, though finding property is Santa Barbara is no easy task, he acknowledged.

The showgrounds property, at the corner of Calle Real and Las Positas Road, originally was developed as the permanent home for the Santa Barbara National Horse & Flower Show and to serve agricultural and equestrian events in the Santa Barbara area. The equestrian facility was built in 1955, and the exhibit building completed four years later.

In addition to the equestrian and livestock stables, corrals and practice rings, today’s facilities include the 22,000-square-foot Exhibit Hall, the 13,000-square-foot Warren Hall, a reception garden, an in-line skating rink, an RV parking lot, more than 1,000 parking spaces and easy access to nearby Highway 101.

Although there are residences along Las Positas Road to the east, the site is bordered on the north side by Adams School and the Santa Barbara Golf Club, which wraps around to the west. There is speculation that the CHP is looking at the west end of the showgrounds property, which is flanked by Calle Real and the freeway to the south and the golf course to the north and west.

Among the showgrounds’ bigger annual events are the recently concluded Santa Barbara Fair & Expo; the CALM Antiques, Decorative Arts and Vintage Show & Sale, scheduled for May 12-4; Circus Vargas, June 15-19; Santa Barbara National Multibreed Horse Show, July 7-9; Santa Barbara National Hunter/Jumper Show, July 12-16; Old Spanish Days Fiesta Stock Horse Show & Rodeo, Aug. 3-6; Santa Barbara Kennel Club Dog Show, Aug. 25-28; and the Junior League of Santa Barbara Rummage Sale, Oct. 25-28.

Noozhawk staff writer Sam Goldman can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Support Noozhawk Today

You are an important ally in our mission to deliver clear, objective, high-quality professional news reporting for Santa Barbara, Goleta and the rest of Santa Barbara County. Join the Hawks Club today to help keep Noozhawk soaring.

We offer four membership levels: $5 a month, $10 a month, $25 a month or $1 a week. Payments can be made using a credit card, Apple Pay or Google Pay, or click here for information on recurring credit-card payments and a mailing address for checks.

Thank you for your vital support.

Become a Noozhawk Supporter

First name
Last name
Email
Select your monthly membership
Or choose an annual membership
×

Payment Information

Membership Subscription

You are enrolling in . Thank you for joining the Hawks Club.

Payment Method

Pay by Credit Card:

Mastercard, Visa, American Express, Discover
One click only, please!

Pay with Apple Pay or Google Pay:

Noozhawk partners with Stripe to provide secure invoicing and payments processing.
You may cancel your membership at any time by sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

  • Ask
  • Vote
  • Investigate
  • Answer

Noozhawk Asks: What’s Your Question?

Welcome to Noozhawk Asks, a new feature in which you ask the questions, you help decide what Noozhawk investigates, and you work with us to find the answers.

Here’s how it works: You share your questions with us in the nearby box. In some cases, we may work with you to find the answers. In others, we may ask you to vote on your top choices to help us narrow the scope. And we’ll be regularly asking you for your feedback on a specific issue or topic.

We also expect to work together with the reader who asked the winning questions to find the answer together. Noozhawk’s objective is to come at questions from a place of curiosity and openness, and we believe a transparent collaboration is the key to achieve it.

The results of our investigation will be published here in this Noozhawk Asks section. Once or twice a month, we plan to do a review of what was asked and answered.

Thanks for asking!

Click Here to Get Started >

Reader Comments

Noozhawk is no longer accepting reader comments on our articles. Click here for the announcement. Readers are instead invited to submit letters to the editor by emailing them to [email protected]. Please provide your full name and community, as well as contact information for verification purposes only.

Daily Noozhawk

Subscribe to Noozhawk's A.M. Report, our free e-Bulletin sent out every day at 4:15 a.m. with Noozhawk's top stories, hand-picked by the editors.

Sign Up Now >