Tag archives: Kirsten Ayars

San Ysidro Overcrossing Opens
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   September 5, 2023

This past weekend marked an important milestone in the construction of the San Ysidro Roundabout: the roundabout was opened for partial usage, and the overpass, an important thoroughfare in Montecito, was reopened, triggering the closure of the temporary fire station that was erected earlier this summer on Hill Road. “It entailed unbelievable collaboration for what […]

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 […]

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 […]

Prepare for Construction Delays
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   October 25, 2022

The project team behind the 101 expansion and associated projects in Montecito are making the rounds this week and next, preparing the community for impending traffic delays. Representatives from Caltrans and SBCAG, along with spokesperson Kirsten Ayars, will be at the Coast Village Business Association this week, followed by a public meeting next Tuesday, October […]

Montecito Association Meets
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   October 18, 2022

During community reports at this week’s MA meeting, Montecito Union School’s Anthony Ranii said the school’s largest fundraiser, the MUS Carnival, is slated for October 22. The fundraiser for the MUS Foundation raises funds to enhance the school’s academic, athletic, and arts programs; enrich the student experience with technology, curriculum, and improved classroom resources; and […]

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 […]

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 […]

MBAR Hears from 101 Team
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   March 8, 2022

Members of the Highway 101 widening team through Montecito were in front of the Montecito Board of Architectural Review last week for the second time, reviewing aesthetic features of the project related to fencing, landscaping, and lighting. The project, which will widen the freeway to three lanes in each direction between Sycamore Creek in the […]

No Sounds Walls in Montecito
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   February 15, 2022

Last week at a well-attended Montecito community meeting regarding the 101 freeway widening project through Montecito, reps from the project reported that sound walls that had been proposed in the Montecito portion have been removed due to flooding concerns.  The project is in initial planning review with the County of Santa Barbara as part of […]

Montecito Planning Commission’s First Meeting of 2022
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   February 1, 2022

At last week’s Montecito Planning Commission hearing, commissioners voted unanimously to appoint commissioner Ron Pulice as the chair of the Commission. While there was some discussion about Pulice’s current non-resident status – he currently resides elsewhere in the county – it was decided that Pulice would be able to finish his term. Commissioners Susan Keller […]

Gas-Powered Generators Being Installed; 101 Widening to be Reviewed
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   September 14, 2021

At this month’s Montecito Association Land Use & Transportation Committee meeting, the group heard from Carla Leal of Cox Communications, who reported on new gas-powered generators being installed in Montecito. The project, which aims to install 49 generators throughout the Montecito area, stemmed from a decision issued by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) earlier […]

Montecito Association Meets
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   June 17, 2021

It was a meaty agenda at this month’s Montecito Association Board of Directors meeting, which featured updates on the Highway 101 expansion through Montecito, the beginning of Smart Meter technology at Montecito Water District, and updates on proposed state housing bills that could have a significant effect on Montecito.  Kirsten Ayars with the 101 widening […]

Land Use Discusses Highways 101 & 192, and Walking Paths
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   April 15, 2021

Kirsten Ayars, rep for the Highway 101 widening project, reported on Tuesday at the Montecito Association Land Use and Transportation Committee that recent attempts at deterring the double crested cormorants in the construction area at Sheffield Drive have been negatively affecting neighbors, and that plans have shifted in order to deter the birds while not […]

Deterring the Birds in Summerland
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   March 4, 2021

With ongoing construction on the Sheffield Drive bridge as part of the Highway 101 widening project, many drivers have noticed mylar streamers and balloons in the eucalyptus trees on the nearby bluffs. Both the Audubon Society and Heal the Ocean have received many concerns over what looks like broken mylar balloons in the trees. Kirsten […]

Recycled Water Update
By Kelly Mahan Herrick   |   July 4, 2019

After meeting on Tuesday, July 2, the joint committee of the Montecito Water and Sanitary Districts continues to move forward on several viable water reuse projects.  Water reuse options being pursued involve different treatment levels and different end-uses, including landscape irrigation (purple pipe), which involves treating wastewater for use in irrigation for large-scale commercial and […]