After six hours of debate and deliberations, the Santa Barbara County Planning Fee voted Thursday to delay motion on a proposed housing growth alongside the outer edges and between fairways at a public golf course west of Orcutt.
The Neighborhoods of Willow Creek and Hidden Canyon have been proposed for websites adjoining to the 18-hole Rancho Maria Golf Membership, whose homeowners have fiercely opposed the housing growth off Freeway 1 between Solomon and Black roads.
After listening to his fellow commissioners leaning towards denial, Fifth District Commissioner Dan Blough urged a continuance to offer the developer and golf course homeowners extra time to give you an appropriate undertaking.
“I actually assume there’s a technique to make this undertaking work and to be a shining star versus one thing that’s a nasty accident,” Blough mentioned.
The longtime developer mentioned he knew the golf course’s earlier homeowners — the fathers of the present homeowners — and provided to assist discover a proposal extra palatable to either side, though some commissioners seen one other try as hopeless.
Following the talks about denying the undertaking, commissioners unanimously agreed to the applicant’s last-minute request to proceed the merchandise to the Feb. 3 assembly so they may attempt to attain an settlement with the golf course homeowners.
Thursday’s assembly was the second time that the commissioners took up the difficulty with the primary listening to occurring final month.
Orcutt Rancho LLC has proposed creating 143 single-family houses on giant heaps for 177 acres in an space generally known as Key Website 21 within the Orcutt Group Plan.
Particularly, Willow Creek would have 89 single-family residential heaps ranging in dimension from 8,070 sq. toes to 16,883 sq. toes.
Hidden Canyon envisions 54 single-family residential heaps ranging in dimension from 10,368 sq. toes to 49,099 sq. toes.
However the Rancho Maria homeowners argued towards the event due to various considerations that the housing undertaking would possibly negatively impression the golf course operations and known as the environmental assessment insufficient.
Points raised through the assembly centered on water, endangered species, wetlands, proximity to prime agricultural land and site visitors on the two-lane Freeway 1.
Earlier than Blough’s suggestion, Third District Commissioner John Parke known as the residential growth and golf course existence — underneath separate possession and created many years aside — “a historic accident.”
He mentioned he didn’t just like the proposed configuration, density or proposal to fill a canyon, and he known as the event “an ideal instance of leap-frogging and sprawl.”
The Neighborhoods of Willow Creek and Hidden Canyon would place houses close to Rancho Maria Golf Membership fairways. Properties additionally could be close to long-standing farmland. (Contributed map)
“I believe there’s an approvable undertaking, (however) it will take substantial redesign and substantial cooperation by the golf course, which they need to do,” Parke mentioned.
However Fourth District Commissioner Larry Ferini spoke up for the housing growth’s different neighbors — farming operations.
“I respect that the golf course has been there for 55 years, however the farming’s been there for over 100 (years),” Ferini mentioned, including that the close by agricultural land is residence to “high-energy farms” with a number of exercise for a lot of the 12 months.
“What we’d be doing is inserting a finger of city exercise into the center of this farm floor, and I simply assume it’s a extremely unhealthy thought,” farmer Ferini mentioned, including that the event has by no means been common in the neighborhood.
As they meet to work out variations, the developer and golf course representatives should keep in mind different considerations which were raised, Parke mentioned.
“It could be sprawl, it could be agricultural compatibility, it could be my considerations about California tiger salamanders and different issues,” he mentioned. “You’ll be able to’t throw these considerations underneath the bus to achieve an settlement. You must come again with one thing that may be a higher plan for each events but additionally a greater plan for the general public.”