City staff is reviewing comments and concerns from more than a dozen community members attending a public meeting at the Santa Barbara Shores Open Space on September 25, 2021. The meeting focused on a review of a tree enhancement effort planned for that park, related to the Fire Station 10 (FS10) project at 7952 Hollister Avenue. The Neighborhood Services Department is in the design phase for the FS10 project, which was approved by City Council in December 2018 and the Coastal Commission in September 2020. The Coastal Commission required a tree replacement plan to provide new native trees in the coastal zone to offset those that will be removed for the fire station construction.
The City began the informal meeting with a five-minute presentation on the purpose of the meeting and shared a 2’ by 3’ printout of the Tree Planting Replacement Plan. The Santa Barbara Shores open space was identified by staff as an excellent opportunity to increase native tree planting and thereby enhance the creek and riparian environment in this area. No existing trees in this open space would need to be removed to accommodate the 41 new trees.
After the presentation, City staff and Santa Barbara County Fire personnel engaged in a lengthy question and answer session noting and addressing concerns from the public. Topics such as fire safety, sightlines from the street to the park equipment area, number of trees and alternative locations were posed by the public. Staff will be reviewing the comments/suggestions/concerns provided at the meeting and work with our consultants to address them where possible while still meeting the requirements from the Coastal Commission.
Pictured: September 25, 2021, meeting