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URBAN HIKE

Little & Loud Architecture
updated: Nov 26, 2011, 9:30 AM

By the Urban Hikers, Peter Hartmann & Stacey Wright

To date we've walked over 95% of the city streets in Santa Barbara, and as a result we've put together a collection of some very unique architecture and architectural features in town. Namely, some of the smallest abodes and some of the most brightly painted places (and features) we've encountered during our walks. We readily admit that "small" is subjective, and so is "loud"- and while we've done our best to remain true to our task, when we see something we love that "almost fits", we include it in our collection anyway.

This is the first "small house" we encountered. We saw it on one of our very first urban hikes, which happened to be on the upper Westside. An Edhat reader reported that it once served as a neighborhood a barber shop. We still think it's just plain adorable.

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The next set of photos shows the variety of "little" buildings/homes we've seen along the way...and by the way, one of the playhouses we've included used to be home to one of the Urban Hiker's dolls and stuffed animals...we were so glad to see it still in use today.

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There are many wonderful cottage courts in town, but none as distinctive as this one with its several tiny cottages, each possessing a unique architectural charm of its own. Aren't these little homes simply adorable?

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More examples of small local homes.

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And we just HAD to include the BIG UGLY... what a great name for a cozy little home.

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Plus this bird commune and a tiny postal "house".

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And last but not least, three little "commercial" buildings - a restaurant, a car repair shop, and a real estate company which occupies an original Moody Sisters' cottage, "The English Cottage", built in the early 1900's.

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Prepare for the LOUD! These homes, buildings, gate, wall and childcare center need no introduction, no clarification and no explanation. Yep, they are just plain brilliant.

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This may be the perfect weekend to put on your shoes, apply a bit of sunscreen and hit the urban hiking trail. It's always a thrill to explore the city, meet the neighbors and stumble onto to something new and wonderful, and you might even burn off some of your Thanksgiving feast!

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 COMMENT 235884 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 11:21 AM

i especially like the garage with the doors that match the motorcycle. i wonder if the homeowner painted the garage to match the bike or bought the bike because it matched the garage.

 

 LOURAY agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 01:06 PM

Thanks to the UHers for another excellent collection.

 

 COMMENT 235920 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 03:02 PM

I love this feature, but the 95% seems high to me. I know you haven't hit my street according to your maps of Mission Canyon/San Roque.

 

 STACE agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 03:34 PM

@ 920 ~ UH here. Our goal is to walk every street within the city limits of Santa Barbara and by our estimation we are about 95% complete with the project. Parts of Mission Canyon are outside the city limits, so if you live in the County, you may be right that we haven't walked on your street. If, on the other hand you live in San Roque, we'll bet you dollars to donuts that we have covered your street. We haven't reported on every street we've hiked, and sometimes the maps we use in our postings are not 100% accurate - I often fill them in at the last minute, and am admittedly not as accurate as Peter is in this regard. But, both our working map and our our official city map are painstakingly highlighted after each of our hikes. Heck - we've even walked part of Arriba Way which is off Kenmore. Name your street and we'll give you a conclusive answer, including when we walked it. Thanks for keeping us honest!

 

 COMMENT 235930 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 03:42 PM

The Loud category is awesome, thanks for sharing!

 

 CHERIDIANE agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 07:24 PM

Oh, looking at this post of yours gave me a thrill, Urban Hikers. Love your work. How fun to see the brilliant colored houses...and read what you have to say.

The small cottage courts in our Santa Barbara intrigue me. I would love to see more pictures of them. Maybe I will get out my walking shoes and camera and take some photos myself.

Cheers!

 

 COMMENT 235979P agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-26 08:56 PM

The loud houses make me happy!

 

 COMMENT 236002 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 07:56 AM

I think you skipped Laurel Canyon Road.

 

 ARCHIE agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 09:18 AM

Just love small to tiny houses! Thanks so much - I'm saving these!

 

 MICHELE agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 09:26 AM

I loved viewing these photos! I especially liked the cubed building painted pastel pink, green, and lavender. Was this building the child care center, or something else?

 

 STACE agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 09:51 AM

Dear 920 - UH here- Yep, we sure have walked Laurel Canyon Rd. We did it on October 16, just before it got dark. In fact, one of the photos we included in this story is from that very hike - it's the lavender gate. In looking back at out photos, we regret that we didn't include the LOUD garage with the grass growing on the roof. That was a great find! Do you know anything about the Namaste' Sataurio up there? The lavender gate is part of that property. We saw the water treatment plant at the top of the road, cruised down Hubba Hubba Lane and saw some fun Halloween decorations. We also saw a whole bunch of fun mailboxes on Laurel Cyn. and included a few of them in our mailbox story. Laurel Canyon was a very memorable hike for us. You live in a really great neighborhood. We're sorry we missed you!
MICHELE - That house is a residence that we hear belongs to a local artist and her husband, and is above Foothill. The purple French Normandy place is a childcare center near Cottage Hospital and is part of the Orfalea Foundation. We love the bright buildings and have may more examples around town - we couldn't include them all because we try to keep the posts to 40 photos. We'll have "Bright & Beautiful Part II" if you want...

 

 COMMENT 236036P agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 10:26 AM

The building Michele mentioned looks like it came to visit Santa Barbara from Miami, and decided to stay.

 

 COMMENT 236109 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 03:36 PM

The Namaste' Sanctuario is a private garden owned by a successful local lawyer. His wife makes herbal essences from the flowers they grow and also designed the garage with the living roof and his law offices to be very environmentally friendly. The property was bought with the stipulation that it not be developed into the usual Santa Barbara mixed use condo mess, keeping the quiet, almost rural nature of this street. In fact, the Sanctuario is a small pocket of County in the middle of SB city proper, so they are allowed much more property rights than the rest of the street, such as the ability to drill their own wells and the freedom from onerous city building codes.

I would add more about the COMB plant, but comment policy doesn't allow more than 1000 characters...lame.

 

 COMMENT 236124 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-27 04:57 PM

BTW, google COMB for some interesting reading on how our water is delivered. The COMB on Laurel Canyon is truly a "lost bureaucracy" with many, many boats, tractors, vehicles of all types and a strangely high proportion of BMWs in the employee parking lot.

 

 COMMENT 236548 agree helpful negative off topic

2011-11-29 12:34 PM

What a charming, fun collection! Great entry in your always fun walks.

 

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