Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

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By Tom Modugno

Well, here we go again. The city is seeking input from everyone about something they have already decided they are going to do. There were 3 options, but 2 were so bad, they've narrowed it down to just 1 bad idea for us to choose from. Narrowing Hollister down to one lane in each direction and as a special bonus, they are adding diagonal reverse parking! That just sounds so safe, doesn't it? 

Hollister Ave Old Town Interim Striping Project | Goleta, CA (cityofgoleta.org)

No matter how you slice it, cutting Hollister down to 2 lanes will add more traffic to an already congested 101 and Calle Real and Cathedral Oaks. So this will not just affect Old Town. This will have citywide repercussions.  

There are lots more reasons this idea is bad, and multiple alternatives to road narrowing, but they've all been discussed at length.  The meeting is tonight  at the Community Center at 6 PM, but if you prefer to send an email, that is very helpful as well.

Mayor and City Council | Goleta, CA (cityofgoleta.org)

It seems the strategy here is to just keep dragging this out until the objectors give up. Maybe it will work.....

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a-1664563423 Sep 30, 2022 11:43 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Community West Bank parking lot is now shared with non-bank customers for Old Towne parking. How about the parking lot behind Pattaya Thai doing the same thing?
We just need more parking. Let's look at what we have and start to share the space.

OTGoodland Sep 30, 2022 10:10 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Tom, as usual, you hit the nail on the head for me. Especially the second sentence. Just like the Old Town Sidewalk Project, this striping project appears to already be decided. I was at the meeting last night, and some of the same questions/concerns that came up at the City Council meeting a while ago (where this was discussed) were addressed. The meeting really felt like a, "we are going to do this, we are going to side-step concerns and try and convince you that we know better" kind of presentation. There were a handful of residents of Old Town (like myself) who expressed concerns related to increased traffic through the maze that is the north side of Hollister. You already see that whenever 101 gets traffic, so it is not a "plausibility," it already factually happens. The response to those concerns was basically, "we will be studying the traffic patters on Hollister and the neighborhoods in the coming months." Wouldn't that have been something that should have been looked at PRIOR to proposing any changes to the area? The City seems hellbent on doing something on Hollister, and I do appreciate that Old Town needs improvement and restoration. However, there is a blatant lack of planning and disregard for residents that really bothers me. One telling point for me (besides the traffic study being done after planning) was when someone asked about the planned timeline for the "permanent" solution to be done, the response from The City was that they had "no timeline and no funding for a final project at this time." There was a hint that this proposed "temporary" solution could be in place for up to 10 years prior to being assessed for permanence.

CreekMoe Sep 30, 2022 09:42 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

i think downtown ventura solved this issue in the last century.

or backup parking is a lame idea. or it is faster to pull into an empty
parking spot than stopping and going into reverse while avoiding the
parked cars.

and pulling out is like pulling in.

but backing in to parking is harder than backing out into an open lane.

it should be tested out on cars without rear cameras. and tourists from
around the world.


Ahchooo Sep 30, 2022 10:21 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

You say that backing into parking is harder than backing out into an open lane. But the problem is that the open lane is actually a traffic lane, so, not open. That’s the theory behind the diagonal reverse parking: when you enter, you are starting from a traffic lane, so other drivers in the traffic lane already saw that you were there. And when you go to pull out and leave, you have a clear view of the traffic in the lane you are about to enter. I don’t see that it is any more difficult than parallel parking, which is less efficient, space-wise.

Sail380 Sep 30, 2022 09:24 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

The creation of a problem to solve a problem that doesn't exist. Then add the two pedestrian and bicycle unfriendly roundabouts into the mix!!

Luvaduck Sep 30, 2022 07:07 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Backing into parking is fine for some people, but for others, it's a nightmare that causes a lot of back and forth not to crowd (or scrape) cars when getting in/out of the parked vehicle. The backing in and out, (especially for older cars w/o cameras) impedes traffic. If that's reduced to one lane each way and a turn lane, expect delays and accidents, especially ones involving young , impatient drivers, old, somewhat hearing or sight or reaction-time impaired drivers and those new to driving or driving after a few beers or a toke at lunch.

Mebk Sep 30, 2022 06:49 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

I agree that people don’t get the diagonal parking. I was parked at east beach and a woman trying to park smashed into me car, her responce was I have a hard time backing up

bicyclist Sep 30, 2022 09:00 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

8:21 - not from my experience, as I personally do pull over when I hear "lights and sirens", only to observe no vehicles doing the same? Did you notice on page 1 of option 1 (now the only "Considered option", what actually happens when the two lanes merge into one? I was staring at the southbound (east) lane @ Orange & Hollister, 2 lanes come from the left off Fairview or 2 lanes continuing from Hollister, if your on a bicycle imagine what safety is involved in the pulling out of the bike lane to avoid traffic turning on to Orange or going straight... But, most importantly if the "Emergency vehicle" is attempting to go northbound (west) there would be essentially no place to "pull over" as the parking now blocks that side with only one lane. I get that people that do NOT ride for transportation needs, can even comprehend that "just take a different route" actually entails (ie. it only adds 3 more Miles and/or just a few more hundred feet of elevation gains). But, the look of the "Bicycle Route" thru downtown Goleta, as a cyclist no way instills confidence or safety (bicycle wise), in my opinion. I've had enough vehicle issues on that stretch as it is... Please at least LOOK at page 1 & 2 of the proposal. Wondering if anyone did?
Mainly I wanted to THANK Tom for bringing this back up & congrats on the "Indy gig"!
Thank you Mr. Modugno!

a-1664551301 Sep 30, 2022 08:21 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Huh? Why do they have no choice? There are other routes, and people do pull over out of the way for lights and sirens...

Zenyatta19 Sep 29, 2022 05:34 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

It will be interesting to see people back into parking spots, while avoiding bicycles and not hold up the one lane of traffic everyone will be forced into. This seems like a horrible idea.
Also, backing into spots blows exhaust onto the sidewalk. Imagine idling cars waiting to pull out into the one available lane during high traffic times. Not great for restaurants or pedestrians along that side.

ginger1 Sep 29, 2022 02:48 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

I'd suggest you learn more about the suggested remedy to this serious problem.

If you have a better suggestion, let's hear it. Doing nothing is not an option. There is no way for bike riders to safely get from one end of town to the other. There is no safe passage for pedestrians. This is not an over-reaction to the fact that a child has died and numerous people with, and without mobility disabilities have been injured or otherwise prevented from getting for here to there.

It is reasonable and responsible to at least try something and if we find it does not work, or someone comes up with a better alternative we can try that. Diagonal parking and dedicated turn lanes have been installed in many communities, often with great success and increased access to local businesses. The current situation, even with lowering the speed limit and installation of crosswalk signals has proven not to be the answer. It makes no sense to wait until more people are killed or injured, right?

Chip of SB Sep 29, 2022 02:40 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

What happened to the plan to build a new road on top of the creek a couple blocks over? I thought the idea was to narrow hollister and build a new road along the creek starting at fairview and ending on the other side of 217 to make up for the lane reduction.

a-1664493895 Sep 29, 2022 04:24 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

So basically a massive bridge running over the creek? That sounds extremely expensive, and probably impossible to get the proper environmental permits for.

sbdude Sep 29, 2022 12:50 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

They should assume the number of cars driving down Hollister will not change. At non-peak times those single lanes will be at maximum capacity. During rush hour it will be blocked solid from the Ward Memorial to Fairview.

195930 Sep 29, 2022 12:38 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Agree w Tom. I’ve worked in Old Town for close to thirty years now. Reducing to one lane each way…not good.

mp805 Sep 29, 2022 12:32 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Tom, you have been in this area forever...What is the option you'd like to see on Hollister? Two lanes on Hollister sounds like a nightmare.

a-1664477221 Sep 29, 2022 11:47 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

Not thrilled about reverse diagonal parking due to the average IQ/lack of care by the general public, but one lane in each direction, plus a center turn lane, is greatly needed here. 4 lanes is much too busy for the area, it's a scary place to drive, walk, and bike right now.

Sensibly Common Sep 30, 2022 07:31 AM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

The east beach parking has a wide buffer between the traffic lanes and the parking so it’s possible to get out of the path of traffic while backing into the spaces. There doesn’t appear to be a buffer proposed on Hollister.

a-1664493811 Sep 29, 2022 04:23 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

BIRD, spend some time down at the east beach volleyball courts. The reverse parking is great in theory, but in reality, people either don't get it or don't care and it heavily affects the flow of traffic. It does make sense space-wise, but it will be a long time until people get used to expecting this type of parking and how to use it.

Bird Sep 29, 2022 01:14 PM
Op-Ed: Hollister Ave Narrowing Again

As for diagonal parking in that area, shouldn't be a problem ...except for the businesses since many will not bother to figure out how to use it and will go elsewhere for shopping. This seems a semi-secret way to convert that section of Hollister into a semi-promenade, with a lot of walkers and e-bikers. Anyone who's been to State Street has seen how that has worked out for anything but restaurants and even some of them are not too happy.

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