Tag archives: 101 freeway

Iconic Cypress Tree Comes Down
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   November 14, 2023

Earlier this week, an iconic cypress tree in the Highway 101 median just south of the San Ysidro Road exit was removed, in preparation for the expansion of the freeway in both directions. The removal has spurred many comments in online and social media forums, with commenters lamenting the loss of the tree, which many […]

Highway 101 Construction Continues
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   October 3, 2023

While progress continues on both roundabouts in Montecito, crews are prepping for the start of the highway widening through Montecito, building new safety railings and retaining walls for both sides of the San Ysidro overcrossings, clearing vegetation, setting temporary barriers, and working on temporary electricity connections for the start of freeway improvements.  Part of that […]

Bus Fire Shuts Down Highway 101
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   September 26, 2023

At about 6:40 pm on Saturday, September 16, Montecito Fire responded to a bus fire on Highway 101 southbound near the Sheffield Drive exit. The driver of a tour bus noticed something was wrong with the vehicle, pulled over and evacuated the approximately 30 passengers and their luggage. The engine compartment of the bus caught […]

Road Construction Roundup: 101 Construction for Montecito Starts Now, Goes Through 2026
By Sharon Byrne   |   June 20, 2023

At the Montecito Association board meeting this week, the 101 team presented on the Montecito construction for the freeway-widening project that started Monday, and will run, in phases, through 2026. The segment from San Ysidro to Olive Mill is funded, while the funding for the segment from San Ysidro to Romero Creek is to be […]

Highway 101 Construction Timing
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   June 6, 2023

The project team behind the 101 expansion and associated projects in Montecito are making the rounds this week, preparing the community for impending traffic delays. Representatives for the project, along with spokesperson Kirsten Ayars, will be at the Montecito Inn this week, on Thursday, June 1, at 4 pm, to discuss the staging timeline for […]

Sound Wall Considerations
By Montecito Journal   |   April 18, 2023

I would like to add something to the comments on the recent Board of Supervisors’ decision regarding sound walls along the 101 corridor in Montecito, which meeting I attended. My concern is that in this conversation we are perhaps disregarding the “elephant in the room,” which would be the status of our creeks and their […]

Sound Wall Appeals Denied at Board of Supervisors
By Sharon Byrne   |   April 11, 2023

The Board of Supervisors heard the appeals filed by Scott Smigel and Bruce Mackenzie of the Santa Barbara County Planning Commission’s approval of the 101-widening project for the 1.4 miles from Olive Mill to San Ysidro. Chris Schmuckal, county planner for the 101 project, gave the staff presentation. Prior to February 2022, sound walls had […]

Montecito’s 2022 Year in Review
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   January 3, 2023

Project Progress Highway 101 Widening Project  The long-awaited widening project from Carpinteria to Santa Barbara was discussed at length in 2022, with countless meetings to discuss design, construction, timing, and other details related to the addition of a third lane through Montecito.  The Montecito segment of the project (called 4D) includes widening 1.4 miles of […]

Montecito Segment of 101 Project Approved 
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   December 27, 2022

The Santa Barbara County Planning Commission unanimously approved the 101 project through Montecito at a hearing last week. “This is the most significant public works project we are going to see in our lifetime,” said Commissioner Laura Bridley. “I’m really proud of what it’s going to be when it’s built,” she said, adding a thank […]

Highway 101 at MPC
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   August 30, 2022

In a six-hour meeting last week, the Montecito Planning Commission (MPC) completed their review of the 101 Highway project through Montecito, sending their recommendations and comments to the Santa Barbara County Planning Commission (SBPC). This was the final hearing in a series of three conceptual reviews at MPC. SBPC will consider the project at two […]

Construction Coming to Montecito
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   August 16, 2022

At a Montecito Association Land Use and Transportation Committee meeting last week, project reps from the Highway 101 team gave an update on the project as well as timelines for two parallel projects, one of which is slated to begin construction this fall. The meeting was in advance of a highly anticipated hearing next week […]

Sonya Harris’s 101 Freeway Ramp Garden Relocated
By Joanne A Calitri   |   July 26, 2022

Summerland is blessed with the beautiful green thumb of Sonya Harris, who single-handedly created a garden scape with over 250 plants and stonework along Lillie Avenue’s sidewalk through the northbound 101 onramp.  Caltrans was ready to bulldoze through that garden were it not for a good deed message from Kirsten Ayars, PR for the Caltrans […]

Upcoming Road Projects
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   July 12, 2022

At this month’s Montecito Association Land Use Committee meeting earlier this week, reps from several agencies shared their upcoming schedules related to road construction work in Montecito.  Last week bids were opened on the sewer main relocation at Olive Mill and San Ysidro, which is preliminary work in anticipation of the two roundabouts that are […]

New Carpool Lanes Open
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   June 28, 2022

On Friday, June 17, community leaders marked the opening of the new freeway carpool lanes and project completion with a community celebration featuring local transit riders alongside Congressman Salud Carbajal, State Senator Monique Limón, Supervisor Das Williams, Carpinteria Mayor Wade Nomura, and local neighbors. This is the first completed segment of the Highway 101: Carpinteria […]

MPC Considers Highway 101 Project 
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   May 31, 2022

The Montecito Planning Commission had its first opportunity to look at the freeway widening project through Montecito last week, with a conceptual hearing held last Wednesday. The project had previously been seen by Montecito Board of Architectural Review in September, February, and March.  Project planner Chris Schmuckal gave Commissioners a background on the regional transportation […]

K-Rails Cleanup
By Montecito Journal   |   April 19, 2022

These K-Rails on the 101 are extreme causes of fear. Who pays for the cleanup after accidents, including the semi on fire in Summerland backing up traffic for hours? Does the City have recourse for cleaning up after the fire and accidents? This superhighway they are building will have big effects on the community. I […]

Building a Greater Sense of Place
By Reeve Woolpert   |   April 12, 2022

Not long ago, saying “I live in Summerland” would trigger a puzzled “where?” Then someone would mention the Big Yellow House. Had the restaurant then been empty and a shade of white as it is today, the landmark might have been the enormous LIQUOR sign looming over town. The next place to dog Summerland just […]

More 101 Design Details
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   April 5, 2022

Last week, Montecito Board of Architectural Review looked at several more design components of the 101 widening project through Montecito, potentially the last of a series of conceptual review meetings before the project comes back for preliminary approval once Caltrans’ application for the project is deemed complete by Santa Barbara County.  As we’ve reported, four […]

Sound Wall Concerns
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   March 29, 2022

At last week’s Montecito Planning Commission hearing, the Commission was briefed on the Highway 101 Widening Project, which will eventually be in front of the Commission for conceptual review once the project application is deemed complete.  Project planner Nicole Lieu explained to the Commission that the final design of the project is still in flux […]

Pursuing Sound Walls
By Sharon Byrne   |   March 15, 2022

On February 3, we learned in a public meeting the Montecito segment of the 101 project would no longer have sound walls. The reason was hydraulic modeling that showed significant flood water rise in a major weather event. This was a major shock to the community. We’ve been looking at the project in our Land […]