A new car wash is on its way to Santa Barbara.
The owners of the Conserv gas station at 150 S. La Cumbre Road are looking to expand onto the lot next door and build a self-serve, drive-thru car wash.
As part of the development, the owners of the gas station, Dansk Investment Group, want to add seven parking spaces.
The new car wash is proposed for the former site of the La Cumbre Pet Hospital, which is set to be demolished.
The project went before the city’s Architectural Board of Review on Monday for a concept review.
Multiple members of the board referred to the project as “handsome,” while others noted that the most interesting part of the design was facing inward, and not toward the La Cumbre Plaza.
“I think it’s a very handsome project and a very nice use of this corner,” board member Richard Six said.
The project also involves extending the sidewalk over asphalt near the Five Points Shopping Center, making a driveway between the gas station and car wash compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, and extensive plantings and permeable paving on a corner of the project to prevent flooding.
The entrance to the car wash would be through the alley that borders the Petco in the Five Points Shopping Center.
Board member Dennis Whelan called the project a “fine proposal,” noting the extensive landscaping.
He had concerns about the architecture.
“I do think the architecture is a little weak,” he said. “The more interesting side is not the public side. What we do see tends to look a little vaguely pueblo. I would encourage you to push it more in the Santa Barbara style.”
He also criticized the proposed bougainvillea and how it would intersect with the trellis.
“That’s going to just be such a mess for a building of this type,” Whelan said. “Even if it didn’t have planting on it I think I could be happy with it.”
Since it was only a concept review, the architectural team will take the advice of the board and rework the design of the project. Board member Six said to make the design more “Hispanic-flavored.”
“It’s going to be a handsome addition to this location,” board member David Black said.