Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street title=
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street
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Source: City of Santa Barbara

As part of the City's Vision Zero Strategy and Streets Pavement Maintenance Project, the City will repave and incorporate new safety features on Chapala Street between Sola and Mission Streets in late 2021. There will be a webinar on June 16 to share details and answer questions about the project.

Register for the Chapala Street Repaving and Vision Zero Project Webinar:
Public Works Staff will host a ZOOM webinar on Wednesday, June 16, at 5:30PM to share details and answer questions about the project. To register for the webinar, please click on the following link: Register for the Chapala Street Repaving and Vision Zero Project Webinar

Why this project?
In 2018, City Council adopted the Santa Barbara Vision Zero Strategy, a strategy to eliminate all traffic-related fatalities and severe injuries, while increasing safe, healthy, and equitable mobility for all. The majority of traffic-related deaths and serious injuries in Santa Barbara are concentrated on a small number of streets, which are called Vision Zero Priority Corridors. Chapala Street is a Vision Zero Priority Corridor due to the history of broadside, sideswipe, and speed-related collisions that have resulted in death and/or serious injuries. In preparation for this project, a Vision Zero safety analysis was performed on Chapala Street to identify safety improvements that may be implemented to address the repeating patterns of collisions.

In late 2021, Chapala Street will be repaved between Sola and Mission Streets. Safety enhancements in this corridor include a new traffic signal and improved intersection lighting at Arrellaga Street, and Chapala Street will be reduced from two traffic lanes to one traffic lane plus a bike lane between Arrellaga and Mission Streets. The bike lane will provide an improved connection for cyclists traveling between Downtown and the upper De La Vina/State Street area. About eight on-street parking spaces would be removed on Chapala Street between Padre and Pedregosa Streets.
Image of intersection at Arrellaga and Chapala Street
For more information, please contact:
Derrick Bailey, Principal Traffic Engineer.
[email protected]

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21 Comments

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Babycakes Jun 08, 2021 05:02 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

It would be nice if they returned several of the streets back into two-way streets. Chapala could easily be a two-way street from Alamar to Mission. Castillo never should have been turned into a one-way street....you used to be able to make a left onto Castillo after crossing the Micheltorena St. bridge to get on the freeway....now it's a big CL to go another block to the signals at Bath, left on Bath, 4-way Stop, Left on Arrellaga, 4-way Stop...then its the on-ramp to 101 North. The huge mess at De la Vina and Mission could be rectified with a round-about and make De la Vina two-way from Mission to Constance (easy access to the SB Chicken Ranch....OMG you can smell it at the corner of State and Constance if the wind is right!!!) These somewhat simple changes would make it much easier and safer for cyclists as well (as long as they follow the rules as they are supposed to do), and not such crazy ideas if you know the city like the back or your hand like some of us do.

SBisOk Jun 08, 2021 02:07 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

I have emailed a few times over the years and they have always responded back to me. After that last massive wreck from 2 months ago where 5 cars were totaled, I emailed again. And Derrick Bailey emailed me back right away. I really appreciated his detailed response for my concern. Last night, after this article dropped, he emailed me personally again to share this great news. So I applaud Derrick for his hard work and for being so responsive to my emails. I look forward to the changes coming to this section of Chapala.

PitMix Jun 10, 2021 02:36 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Volumes are less on Chapala after you cross Mission. I would guess this is apples to oranges comparison unless you have data that the Chapala - Arrellaga volumes are the same as Chapala north of Mission volumes.

YepSB Jun 08, 2021 04:18 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Pit, do you ever see the merge to one lane on Chapala after the traffic light at Mission causing a backup or any issue at all? I in my 19 years of driving it multiple times a week never have. It will be just the same situation at Arrellaga/Chapala once the traffic light is installed, with the merge happening after the light. And the light will help keep the Arrellaga to the freeway 5 o'clock flow from backing up to State street. As far as getting onto Chapala off of the side streets once Chapala is taken down to one lane, have you turned on to upper Garden since it was taken down to one lane? If not, it is WAY easier to turn on to Garden as a one lane as you only have to look for one lane coming at you before making the turn versus hoping there isn't another car in the second lane coming at you tucked behind another car in the other lane where you can't see it coming.
Safety-wise and traffic flow-wise, this project will be an all around win.

PitMix Jun 08, 2021 02:50 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Yep, concentrating the traffic volume into one lane is going to make it quite busy. Not going to be fun for the residents trying to avoid bikes and oncoming traffic as they are trying to get into the traffic flow.

YepSB Jun 08, 2021 01:41 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

The issue in this area is not that the roadway cannot handle the amount of traffic flowing through it. Actually quite the opposite. The traffic flows too freely (aka too fast) and needs to be regulated, for the safety of drivers and pedestrians in the area. Taking Chapala down to one lane between Arrellaga and Mission will help accomplish that.

Andrea Smith Jun 08, 2021 08:46 AM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Chapala and Arrellaga intersection has been a dangerous one for a long time, routine accidents some very serious. But removing parking to put in a bike lane for a few bikes when the majority of this town is renters who need street parking? Stupid. There is more of a need for parking than a bike lane we hardly see that many bikes, plus this will cause spillover parking problems to other streets. Not very smart.

Byzantium Jun 08, 2021 05:00 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Pit, Prop 98 allows teacher-union total control over 50% of the state's general fund for public education and that is why you have a Democrat super-majority. Money flows to K-12 automatically regardless of outcomes. Prop 98 buys a lot of teacher union election interest. I offer the IV experience with tents and tiny houses as an example of crime-riddled vagrant camps, which are also currently being proposed for this Carrillo/Castillo city entrance location. A multi-tier parking garage is not massive - it is simply several stories appropriate with this location, where a three-story public housing unit stands on an opposite corner. Stacked parking can maximize the vehicle occupancy. Bikes can go the last mile to the many proposed new downtown residences, all of which in combination will help revitalize the downtown retail district.

a-1623190699 Jun 08, 2021 03:18 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

A city can have many entrances! Heading south on 101, there's a sign, I think, that says to turn onto Carrillo to downtown, for the Presidio; that suggests that it's a city entrance!

PitMix Jun 08, 2021 02:48 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Non, Carrillo is not what I consider the "entrance to the city". If you want to talk about an entrance, it is probably along Cabrillo to State St. Or Garden. And taking a shot at homeless while trying to make a massive parking structure sound appealing is definitely vitriol. If you consider those statements to be "facts", that explains why the Dems have a supermajority in the state legislature.

Byzantium Jun 08, 2021 09:11 AM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

City needs to turn Carrillo/Castillo lot into a multi-story parking garage for local west-downtown residents, since they are going to keep taking away street parking for bike paths. Fact of life - this is a very densely populated area - do something for them - European cities offer multi-tier parking garages within urban residential neighborhoods. This where they can concentrate electric charging stations and electric bike rentals. What do you want at the welcoming entrance to this city - a crime-riddled vagrant camp, or a modern response to urban transportation?

pkww Jun 08, 2021 09:08 AM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Bikes and parking spots don't seem to be at odds here. The article says that the 8 spots will be removed between Pedregosa and Padre. That tells me that they are probably painting dedicated left/right turning lanes on Chapala at the Mission light. Since Chapala will now be one lane between Arrellaga and Mission, that leaves room to paint a bike path (like Castillo/Bath streets) without affecting parking.

YepSB Jun 07, 2021 08:09 PM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

Excellent news! Thanks to all the Edhat commenters that over the years expressed their desire for making this a safer corridor. I'm going to believe that "the powers that be heard us 'Hatters!

SBsurferlife Jun 08, 2021 10:04 AM
Safety Enhancements Coming to Chapala Street

I'm actually standing on Chapala Street as I type this pointing to the intersection yelling "here! here!" Honk and wave if you see me :)

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