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Local News

Future of New Neighborhood Park in Old Town Goleta on Hold

Project can't move forward until ownership of the 4-acre parcel is worked out

Plans for a neighborhood park on Kellogg Avenue in Old Town Goleta remain on hold while the city settles ownership issues related to the 4-acre parcel. Click to view larger
Plans for a neighborhood park on Kellogg Avenue in Old Town Goleta remain on hold while the city settles ownership issues related to the 4-acre parcel. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

A sign advertising the future home of a new park near Hollister and Kellogg avenues in Old Town Goleta has been in place since 2013.

“No trespassing” notices clutch a chain link fence surrounding the 4-acre city neighborhood park slated for the vacant parcel near San Jose Creek and adjacent to the Santa Barbara Nissan dealership.  

The project remains frozen until the issue of ownership at 170 South Kellogg Ave. is worked out with the state, according to city spokeswoman Valerie Kushnerov. 

“The city is prepared to move forward with construction as soon as that issue is resolved,” Kushnerov said. “We are working through the process so we can eventually build a park in Old Town.”

According to Kushnerov, California’s law dissolving redevelopment agencies across the state has been changed since 2011 — the year design plans kicked off. 

Site ownership needs to be resolved between the Goleta Redevelopment Agency Successor Agency, which obtains title to the property, and the city.

“There are lawsuits between redevelopment agencies and cities in the state — that’s setting the legal precedent for how this is handled,” Kushnerov said.

Funding sources come from a grant totaling $910,000 from the state.

In 2012, Goleta was one of 64 recipients chosen from more than 400 applicants requesting $1.3 billion from the California State Parks’ Office of Grants and Local Services.

The city also received a grant totaling $10,000 from the Davenport Institute for public input on the design process.

In addition to the site ownership matter, a final park design needs to return to the Goleta’s City Council for final approval.

An estimate for that meeting is this spring.

A multipurpose field, basketball and handball court, concrete ping-pong table, bocce ball court, exercise equipment, picnic areas, restrooms, a splash pad shooting out recycled water, and a skateboard plaza are recreational amenities in the design.

The city hired Santa Barbara-based Van Atta Associates Landscape Architects to design the park and conduct public outreach.

The City Council reviewed a final design of the park in 2015, but city officials wanted to alter features before giving the project the green light.

Goleta’s Parks and Recreation Commission revised the design incorporating the council’s feedback more than a year later.

City staff continues final design efforts so the project can move forward upon successful title acquisition, according to the city.

Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland 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.

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