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Santa Barbara Mesa Groups Get OK to Create Blufftop Overlook on Shoreline Drive

City Council approves plan to develop Kallman Family Overlook on land owned by the U.S. Coast Guard

The city of Santa Barbara, working with Mesa Architects, plans to create the Kallman Family Overlook on U.S. Coast Guard property near La Mesa Park, overlooking the ocean. Click to view larger
The city of Santa Barbara, working with Mesa Architects, plans to create the Kallman Family Overlook on U.S. Coast Guard property near La Mesa Park, overlooking the ocean. (Joshua Molina / Noozhawk photo)

The Santa Barbara City Council voted unanimously Tuesday to create an ocean-view overlook on Shoreline Drive east of La Mesa Park.

Mesa Architects has worked with the community to develop the overlook on undeveloped blufftop land owned by the U.S. Coast Guard.

“This is going to be a great amenity for that corner,” Councilman Jason Dominguez said. “I am really psyched.”

The site would be called the Kallman Family Overlook and include native plants and educational components about bluff ecology, a history of the Mesa lighthouse and Coast Guard station.

Carol Kallman would lead fundraising efforts for the overlook design, permitting, installation and maintenance. Supporters of the project said they have a $250,000 fundraising goal.

The Elings Park Foundation would serve as the nonprofit entity to provide liability coverage, fiscal oversight and administrative responsibility.

The city plans to work with the Coast Guard on a licensing agreement for the site.

Other potential collaborators include the Santa Barbara City College Horticultural Program, the Santa Barbara Men’s Garden Club, Santa Barbara Beautiful and the Mesa Association.

Councilman Harwood “Bendy” White said he was impressed with the Mesa Architects volunteer group’s efforts all over the Mesa.

“With no money and no plan, the Mesa Architects are managing to get re-striping, roundabouts and now we get overlooks happening on the Mesa,” White said.

“It’s just another example of smart, focused community participation. I am really excited we could bring this forward.”

Dennis Thompson of Mesa Architects said the Coast Guard regards the 150-foot-long blufftop property as surplus property.

It could take six months to get a coastal development permit and the overlook could be installed within a year. 

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina 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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