Goleta’s San Jose Creek Bike Path Plan Would Connect Old Town to Beach and UCSB | Local News
The City of Goleta plans to build a bike path along the Highway 217 corridor to connect Old Town to Goleta Beach Park and UC Santa Barbara.
The project is still in its conceptual phase, although there have been feasibility studies for the project since 2009. In 2019, the city received an active transportation grant to design and build the San Jose Multi-Use Trail Project Creek.
The project would complete an approximately three-mile-long bike path that would connect areas north of Highway 101 to the existing San Jose Creek-North Bike Path and Atascadero Creek Trail.
According to the website, the project would fill gaps in the regional network path, remove barriers to active transportation, connect the disadvantaged community of Old Town Goleta to key destinations, and provide a separate, dedicated non-motorized path between northern areas. and areas south of Coast Route, UCSB and Goleta Beach.
“The San Jose Creek Bike Path project was considered before the city was incorporated more than 20 years ago,” said Charlie Ebeling, director of public works for Goleta. “We are thrilled to have it back in the spotlight and ready to receive public comment again.”
The proposed trail project would connect more of Goleta to coastal bike paths. (Photo by Grace Kitayama/Noozhawk)
Goleta examined the environmental impacts of the construction and found that the main issues involved would be aesthetics, air quality, noise, hydrology and water quality.
Some of the Project construction would take place along San Jose Creek, which is home to 16 special-status wildlife species. In addition, up to 82 trees would be felled in the northern segment of the proposed project. According to the environmental review, the trees would be replaced on a one-to-one ratio.
The biggest air quality pollutants the city says are caused by construction are particulate matter and sulfur dioxide.
Funding for the early stages of the project would come from a combination of the Goleta Transportation, Community and System Preservation Program, the Regional Surface Transportation Program, and the Goleta Transportation Improvement Program.
The city expects construction to begin in early spring 2024. The estimated duration of construction is approximately one year and will be completed in spring 2025.
As a portion of the proposed project route would be adjacent to Highway 217 and within the Caltrans right-of-way, the project would require Caltrans approval. The city is working with Caltrans to have the Class I bike path included in the Caltrans Highway 217 Bridge on the San Jose Creek Replacement Project.
A map of the proposed San Jose Creek multi-use trail project. (photo of the city of Goleta)
Katie Davis, who has resided in Goleta for 21 years, says she’s heard of plans to complete the bike path for some time and is happy the city is making progress on its plan.
“We like to ride the bike and especially on the class one split pads where it’s safer,” Davis said. “There are a lot of places where it is quite dangerous to cycle, so any additional infrastructure that helps make it safer is great and happy to see. I mean, it’s great that they do an environmental review so they can minimize the impacts. »
Davis said the benefit of having a bike lane along a creek is that cars can’t access those areas.
“They are shaded and that allows the public to access these beautiful natural spaces,” she said.