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Goleta Council OKs Parcel Map for Marriott Residence Inn, Greenlighting Construction

New 118-room hotel project across from Santa Barbara Airport could get started in 2016 after 8 years of discussion and delays

An artist’s rendering depicts the Marriott Residence Inn slated for the 6300 block of Hollister Avenue in Goleta, across from the Santa Barbara Airport.
An artist’s rendering depicts the Marriott Residence Inn slated for the 6300 block of Hollister Avenue in Goleta, across from the Santa Barbara Airport.  (R.D. Olson Development rendering)

The Goleta City Council has made way for crews to begin construction of a Marriott Residence Inn on Hollister Avenue, approving the developer’s parcel map and accompanying landscaping improvements.

The city wasn’t sure when construction of the 118-room hotel would begin in the 6300 block of Hollister Avenue across from the Santa Barbara Airport, but spokeswoman Valerie Kushnerov said it’s safe to say 2016 at the earliest.

The council devoted little discussion to the vote earlier this month, but Councilman Michael Bennett said he wanted to be sure the hotel would have 118 rooms — not 140 as the staff report noted.

A 140-room hotel was originally proposed by developer Bob Olson in 2007 after purchasing the property, but those plans were rebuffed because the site was part of a larger Chumash archaeological site.

Olson, of R.D. Olson Development, also built and owns the Courtyard by Marriott hotel that opened in 2012 at 401 Storke Road.

Bennett asked staff to ensure the City of Santa Barbara would be burying utilities in front of the hotel on Hollister Avenue, since those improvements would be in Santa Barbara’s jurisdiction.

“I think it’s important to know what’s going on in the frontages,” he said.

Despite concerns about building during the drought and upending a tribal archaeological site, the council voted 4-1 in September 2014 to approve the development.

Councilwoman Paula Perotte cast the lone dissenting vote, with her colleagues excited about the transient-occupancy taxes a hotel could bring the city.

The project passed the Goleta Planning Commission with a 3-2 vote, only after the developers agreed to include a sanctuary garden/educational component.

With the recent approval, developers can move forward with required public improvements on Robin Hill Road and South La Patera Lane, including the design and construction of curbs, gutters, sidewalks and driveways.

The developer also must install and maintain landscaping, along with the public right of way along Robin Hill and La Patera.

Olson obtained a service letter from the Goleta Water District based on historic water use at the site, which allowed the project to move forward.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff 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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