2018 Goleta’s Finest Nominations are Open

On Friday, November 16th the Goleta Chamber of Commerce will be honoring
Goleta’s Finest with a “Celebration of Our Community” at The Ritz-Carlton Bacara. If you know of someone within our community deserving special recognition for their
activities, then here is your chance to nominate them for this prestigious award.   

To nominate, please click on the link below, and fill out the attached 

nomination form. Several recommendations may be made, but only one for each 

category should be submitted. 

Nominations must be turned in by Friday,  September 14, 2018.

Categories for nominations are as follows: Small Business of the Year, Large 

Business of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year, Educator of the Year, Student of the Year, Non-profit of the Year, Volunteer of the Year, Woman of the Year and Man of the Year.

Click here to submit a nomination!

Introducing the 2018 Goleta Magazine

The Goleta Chamber of Commerce is excited to launch the 2018-2019 Goleta Magazine, featuring the stories of the people who work, play and innovate and make Goleta a great place to be. This year’s cover features Tony Arroyo, founder of Los Arroyos, and his son, Diego. Los Arroyos has been a Santa Barbara staple for generations and we are so proud to have their delicious cuisine in Calle Real Center.

Other featured articles include: Apeel Sciences, Brighten Solar, Por La Mar Nursery, Michael Baker, John Dent and Karen Ramsdell.

The digital magazine will launch next week. To request a hard copy of the magazine, please contact Cortney@GoletaChamber.com

Chamber Presents Annual TechTopia Summit

Business leaders from across the south coast gathered to celebrate our high-tech business community at the 2018 TechTopia Summit. The event, attended by 140 people, included an economic development bus tour around Goleta highlighting new businesses, new housing opportunities and other significant capital improvement projects.

Attendees reconvened in the Deckers Brands Rotunda for a robust program featuring a report on industry clusters from Josh Williams of BW Research Partners and an update on the Workforce Homebuyer Program from Housing Trust Fund President, Jennifer McGovern. Kristen Miller, President & CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce spoke to Goleta’s position as a high-tech hub. Miller launched the 2018-2019 Goleta Magazine, Goleta’s premier magazine featuring stories of local businesses, non-profits and residents.
The program ended with a panel of business leaders sharing their experience growing a business in Goleta. Panelists were: Scott Romesser, LogMeIn; Yifeng Wu, Transphorm; Ben Schroeder, Founder, Santa Barbara Cider and Rick Spitzer, KARL STORZ Imaging.
Goleta prides itself on being a business-friendly center for world-class innovation and entrepreneurs.  The Chamber continues to showcase the successes and challenges of our unique high-tech community.

Chamber and City Partner on 11th State of the City

Growth and the faces who make up the Goleta council were at the forefront Friday afternoon during the 11th annual State of the City address.

Mayor Paula Perotte used her speech to highlight the recent growth of the area and to credit the work of two council members who were elected in 2016.

“Council members (Stuart) Kasdin and (Kyle) Richards are adding their new ideas and energy to those of our other council members’ long experience,” she told more than 400 business representatives, elected officials and residents gathered inside The Ritz-Carlton Bacara. “This team positions us to turn the page for a new and even brighter future.”

Acknowledging UC Santa Barbara’s growth, Perotte touched on the topic of new housing and development in Goleta, suggesting to “stop and deal with the impacts of recent growth,” including critical services to residents such as road capacity, water, parking, recreation and public safety.

“I’m not saying that we can or should stop all growth,” Perotte said. “We can all agree our residents want a carefully managed, sustainable growth that is appropriate to the spirit of our General Plan.”

Perotte advocated for enhancing the character of Goleta while following a sustainable course of growth that is “appropriate” with the planning tool that establishes expectations for Goleta’s future as well as its natural and built environment. She again noted Kasdin and Richards.

“Goletans made this clear last election by voting council members Kasdin and Richards, who both ran on better casing for greater growth,” Perotte said. “Since they were elected, no new large projects have been approved.”

Perotte said Goleta has “added over 1,000 new housing units in Goleta in just a few years.” She added that “many supported housing to keep our local employers and workers, but new housing units alone do not attract workers — potential recruiters, new workers and current residents expect and desire a high quality of life.”

Sustainability, road and sidewalk improvement projects, and other infrastructure work were common topics addressed by Perotte. In addition, continuing to develop plans for Old Town Goleta upgrades as well as an increase in recreational space and High-Intensity Activated Crosswalk signals were mentioned.

“The state of the city of Goleta is strong — I’d even say vibrant, vigorous and vivacious,” Perotte said at the Goleta Chamber of Commerce event. “We are on a positive, upward trajectory.”

She addressed the effort to reduce vehicle traffic congestion with the peak-hour Amtrak Pacific Surfliner passenger train and noted Goleta’s looming environmental challenges such as monitoring hydrogen sulfide and dealing with transportation and the “possibility” of oil drilling.

The decommissioning of Venoco’s assets — Platform Holly off the coast of Goleta and the Ellwood Onshore Facility processing plant near Haskell’s Beach — “will need attention,” she said.

Goleta City Manager Michelle Greene gives an overview of the city’s financial outlook.

Goleta City Manager Michelle Greene gives an overview of the city’s financial outlook. (Brooke Holland / Noozhawk photo)

The mayor spoke of the city’s direct management and operation of the Goleta Municipal Library starting July 1, and noted the goal of improving library services.

She also emphasized the Monarch Butterfly Inventory and Habitat Management Plan at the Ellwood Mesa to protect the safety of trees, sensitive habitat and public.

In her overview of the city’s financial outlook, City Manager Michelle Greene said Goleta’s financial picture is stable, with the projected revenues at $25.7 million and the projected expenditures at $24.8 million.

Goleta’s general fund is expected to end the fiscal year with an unobligated balance of more than $1.2 million, she said.

According to Greene, the city’s transient occupancy tax, or TOT, sales tax and property taxes make up 85 percent of Goleta’s total revenue. TOT generated about $8.6 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year and was expected to generate $9.2 million in the 2017-18 fiscal year, according to Greene.

The projection reflects an increase in TOT related to the opening of hotels operating in the city and room occupancy spiking during Santa Barbara County’s twin disaster events, she said.

Greene said sales tax posted a slight increase, producing $6.5 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year to a projected $6.5 million in the current fiscal year.

“Despite the growth, the city remains conservative in its projections for future years because we are seeing the impacts of online sales on traditional brick-and-mortar retailers,” Greene said.

Change in the retail landscape means shifts in sales tax allocation, according to Greene.

She said property tax is expected to increase slightly this year, rising to about $6.5 million. Among other encouraging numbers, she said, the unemployment rate is 3.9 percent in Goleta.

“The state of our city is positive,” Greene said. “We are working hard to enhance our reserve funds, so we have the resources available for projects and to serve our community.”

Planning Director Peter Imhof briefly spoke at the event.

— Noozhawk staff writer Brooke Holland can be reached at bholland@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk@NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

Chamber Endorsed Commuter Rail Opening April 2nd

The Chamber is very pleased to announce a new early morning Pacific Surfliner train will be running from Los Angeles and Ventura counties to Santa Barbara and Goleta. Service is planned to begin on April 2, 2018. When combined with existing southbound Pacific Surfliner service in the afternoon, the new morning train will make it possible to travel to work in Santa Barbara county via rail.

“The 15,000 residents who daily travel the 101 corridor will soon have a new transportation option that can get them out of traffic. Passenger rail is an excellent alternative to driving alone that saves time and money,” said Michael T. Bennett, Goleta City Councilmember and the SBCAG Board representative. “This new service is coming at the perfect time as traffic congestion on the 101 has recently increased because of impacts from the Montecito debris flow and the closure of Highway 192”.

A partial list of the new schedule and train stations is listed below:

Northbound (AM) #759
Camarillo 5:46
Oxnard 5:58
Ventura 6:12
Carpinteria 6:34
Santa Barbara 6:47
Goleta 7:16


Southbound (PM) #792
Goleta 4:25
Santa Barbara 4:40
Carpinteria 4:55
Ventura 5:26
Oxnard 5:40
Camarillo 5:56


“Goleta has always been a pioneer in using all innovative and modern workplace policies to enhance our employees’ quality of life from bike lockers, to flex time and remote working,” said Kristen Miller, President & CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce. “Commuter rail is in line with this thinking and a great option for our employees.”

Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District shuttle buses will be available from the Santa Barbara and Goleta train stations to connect train passengers to worksites downtown and in Goleta as well as Cottage Hospital locations. Bike lockers will also be available for passengers who’d like to store bicycles to ride the last mile to work. Train passes will also be valid on all VCTC Coastal Express buses if commuters prefer to take the train one direction and a bus on the other leg of their commute.

Monthly passes for this service will be available and special promotions for the first month will be announced soon. Commuters looking to work later than the departure time may also use their tickets for the evening Pacific Surfliner Train. The Chamber will continue to publish details as they are announced.

For more information on this service, click here…

Congressman Salud Carbajal releases updated Disaster Recovery Guide

Congressman Salud Carbajal releases updated Disaster Recovery Guide. Click here for the updated recovery guide..

A message from Congressman Salud Carbajal:

Our region has experienced one of the worst fires in California’s history. The Thomas Fire forced thousands of

people to evacuate their communities, destroyed thousands of homes, and left many families with nothing.

The Thomas Fire, which started on December 4th, 2017, has burned more than 272,000 acres. The fire has destroyed over a thousand structures, many of which are homes. Thousands of people were displaced and a Cal Fire engineer from San Diego died battling the blaze.

Severe rainfall following the Thomas Fire created devastating mudslides in Montecito, California on January 10th, 2017. At least 20 residents were killed in the storm and more than 500 homes were destroyed in the slide.

Funds from Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) may be available to help individuals rebuild, repair and replace housing and other personal property not covered by insurance.

Individuals who were impacted by the fires or storm should apply for FEMA assistance. You can apply in the following ways:

  • Online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov; www.disasterassistance.gov/es (Spanish)
  • Via smartphone at m.fema.gov; m.fema.gov/esp (Spanish)
  • Constituents may call the registration phone number at 1-800-621-3362; those who have a speechdisability or hearing loss and use TTY, should call 1-800-462-7585 directly; for those who use 711 orVideo Relay Service (VRS), call 1-800-621-3362.
  • Visit a Disaster Recovery Center

Goleta Chamber Welcomes 5 Business Leaders to Board of Directors

Organization gives Ambassador of the Year Award to Emily Atkins and Chairman’s Award to Marty Plourd

From left, Kristen Miller, president/CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce, with board members Tony Vallejo, CPA; Renee Grubb, Village Properties; Matt Long, Signature Flight Support; Rich Nahas, Glen Annie Golf Club; and Hallie Avolio, Latitude 34 Technologies and chairwoman of the chamber board. (Not pictured is Donna Lewis, Goleta Union School District.)Click to view larger

From left, Kristen Miller, president/CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce, with board members Tony Vallejo, CPA; Renee Grubb, Village Properties; Matt Long, Signature Flight Support; Rich Nahas, Glen Annie Golf Club; and Hallie Avolio, Latitude 34 Technologies and chairwoman of the chamber board. (Not pictured is Donna Lewis, Goleta Union School District.) (Goleta Chamber of Commerce photo)

The Goleta Chamber of Commerce has welcomed five business leaders from a variety of Goleta industries to join Chamber’s board of directors.

The new members include Renee Grubb, Donna Lewis, Matt Long, Rich Nahas, and Tony Vallejo. They were announced at Goleta’s Annual Membership Meeting on Wednesday night at the new Hilton Garden Inn Spyglass Rooftop.

The evening also celebrated outgoing board members Dave Clark and Francois DeJohn.

The chamber gave the Ambassador of the Year Award to Emily Atkins and the Chairman’s Award to Marty Plourd.

“The year ahead looks bright in Goleta,” said Kristen Miller, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce. “We’ll continue to build on our core strengths of growing local high-tech businesses, strengthening the local economy and capitalizing on tourism revenue to enhance our community and quality of life for all.”

At the event, Miller said: “We are so grateful to come together tonight, as a business community, and friends, to celebrate. The last six weeks have been an unprecedented time in our community. These events leave us wondering how we move forward and at the chamber we strongly believe that we should lean on each other; gather our community, work toward recovery and hold onto our hope for the future.

“Our first responders, government agencies and community have stepped up in so many ways over the past few weeks that it reminds us what a special place we live in, and gives us hope for our future and our community.”

The chamber represents 450 members and 35,000 jobs in the Goleta Valley.

“More importantly we strive to be relevant to your business,” Miller said. “We are working on things that matter to you, things that make a difference in the Goleta economy, and ways that business and government come together to improve our business community.

The Chamber in 2018 will continue to work on business issues including housing, transportation infrastructure, water supply, regulation and workforce development, Miller said.

— Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at jmolina@noozhawk.com. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk@NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

2017 Goleta’s Finest Winners Announced: Community Awards Gala will be December 2nd

The Goleta Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the 2017 Goleta’s Finest Award Winners. Goleta’s Finest is a 68-year old tradition honoring remarkable individuals whose contributions have enhanced the Goleta community.

The 2017 award recipients will be honored with a formal celebration on Saturday, December 2nd, 6:00-9:30 p.m. at the beautiful Ritz-Carlton Bacara.  The evening will include food stations, wine and beer, followed by the awards ceremony.

The 2017 Goleta’s Finest winners are:

Man of the Year: Roger Aceves

Roger Aceves is serving his 11th year on the Goleta City Council, serving two terms as Mayor – he has never missed a meeting. Roger is a lifetime resident and community activist. After finishing his 30-year law enforcement career at the Santa Barbara Police Department, Roger has continued to give back to our community. Aceves served as El Presidente for Old Spanish Days in Santa Barbara in 2001, and was appointed by former Gov. Gray Davis to the 19th Agricultural District, which runs Earl Warren Showgrounds. He served on the board of the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara, Goleta Valley Historical Society, Goleta Old Town Community Association and is currently Chairman of the Board for the Goleta Elks Lodge #613. Roger is a champion for the business community and rarely misses a B2B Breakfast to connect with business and his local constituents. Last year, along with his wife, Debby, Roger championed a community campaign and raised $22,000 for Rancho La Patera and Stow House.

Woman of the Year: Karen Ramsdell
Karen Ramsdell is a longtime Goleta resident and champion for education and historical preservation. After 29 years at Santa Barbara Airport, and 37 years of public service with the City of Santa Barbara, Karen retired from her post as Director of the Santa Barbara Airport in 2013. In her position at Airport Director, Karen led the Airline Terminal Project, the $63 million-dollar renovation of our airport. Her passion for historical preservation helped her spearhead the relocation and refurbishment of the Earle Ovington Historical Terminal. Post retirement, her love for history and willingness to give back has continued. Karen has served as president of the Santa Barbara County Genealogical Society and has been on the board of the Goleta Valley Historical Society since 2010, serving as president for the last four years.

Educator of the Year:
John Dent
John Dent leads the Dos Pueblos Media Department with passion, talent and energy. As chairman of Dos Pueblos’ Career Technical Education Department, Dent is the advisor for the DP News program, the award-winning Dos Pueblos Yearbook, and The Charger Account student-run newspaper. While DP News runs a live show three days a week focusing on the latest information for students, the Charger Account focused on stories relevant to the student body including those happening on campus and in the community. The award-winning DP Yearbook continues to transform the way students’ years are captured. These projects could not happen without Dent motivating his students to continue to innovate and develop professional journalism skills.

Non-Profit of the Year: United Boys and Girls Club of Santa Barbara County
United Boys and Girls Club of Santa Barbara County is making a true impact in the lives of the kids in our community. The non-profit youth development agency serves children ages 5-18 years old, at 9 locations across Santa Barbara County. As of July 31, 2015 club members have collectively made 15,889 visits to club locations. Those same members have participated in 2,785 cumulative hours of educational programming. During that same time period UBGC has served 35,010 meals. No child is ever turned away due to their economic situation. Participants in the program are continuing to come more often which allows the program to have a deeper impact. The Goleta club location has been an integral part of our community for many, many years and is well loved for its many programs including the boys basketball league.


Volunteer of the Year: Lisa Rivas

Lisa has been a long-time champion for Goleta and education. In business and personal life Lisa continues to engage with a variety of local non-profits. She has been on several non-profit boards including the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara, the Teachers Fund, The Chamber of the Santa Barbara Region and the Goleta Lemon Festival to name a few. Most notably, in 2014, Lisa stepped up to rebuild the Goleta Education Foundation. With a goal to transform the all-volunteer organization into a foundation that secures funding for programs to ensure every student in the district has access to the necessary resources, Lisa worked tirelessly to put together a variety of fundraisers, connect with local businesses and create a sustainable program that serves all schools in the Goleta school district.

Student of the Year: Lupe Simon

Lupe Simon stands out in a way that is subtle. After facing challenges through her youth, she sought out the assistance of the Academy for Success program and has thrived personally and academically. Lupe has vastly improved her academics and has continued to challenge herself and push herself outside of her personal comfort zone. She applied for the Yearbook and was accepted and has excelled in Advanced Photography. She is a community builder with her grace and kindness. She is a scholastic contributor with her insight and determination. Lupe plans to go to college next, which was something she was unsure she could ever achieve.

Small Business of the Year:
Buynak Fauver Archbald Spray
Buynak, Fauver, Archbald & Spray, LLP is one of California’s leading law firms, but what sets them apart is their dedication to our local community. Partners at BFAS are deeply involved in their communities serving on a variety of non-profit boards including the Goleta Chamber of Commerce, Hospitality Santa Barbara, NAWBO and The Chamber of the Santa Barbara Region to name a few. Their commitment to community ensures that essential non-profits have access to legal acumen, a wide network of supporters and volunteers with a passion for Goleta.

Large Business of the Year: FLIR Systems
FLIR Systems is one of our area’s largest employers and a leader in the infrared market. FLIR acquired Indigo Systems, a start-up out of UCSB, in the early 2000’s and quickly became the world leader for uncooled infrared devices. Indigo’s small, entrepreneurial staff and FLIR’s sales channel, brand name and financial standing combined to create a perfect storm of productivity and profitability. The company has laid down their roots in Goleta by purchasing their facility at Cabrillo Business Park and moving its 450 employees into one facility there. FLIR is a champion for manufacturing in the USA and a pioneer for lean manufacturing in Goleta.


Innovative Business of the Year: Brighten Solar

Brighten Solar is changing the way solar technology is delivered by creating customized solar solutions, delivering quality products and continuing to focus on spreading the renewable energy footprint. Their team has developed systems for Commercial, Residential, and Non-Profits across the central coast and remain focused on solar education and providing their clients with a range of options and pricing to develop the best systems. Jeremy and Marine have built a great company, based on their genuine passion for renewables and the environment


Entrepreneur of the Year: Apeel Sciences

Apeel Sciences is changing the world through their use of plant-based technology, helping to eliminate food spoilage and reduce reliance on chemicals. With a mission to waste less food, Apeel has developed products hat fortify the surface of fresh fruits and vegetable, forming a thin, organic, barrier that shields produce from both biotic and abiotic stressors. Apeel Sciences is committed to being a technological and environmental leader in the agricultural industry. Their team, made up of nearly 75% Gauchos, recently relocated to a 105,000 square-foot facility in Goleta where they are further developing their products.


Community Impact Award: Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara

The Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara has been supporting students in their higher education goals since 1962. They provide scholarships to eligible students from Santa Barbara County for college, graduate, and vocational school education. In May of 2017, The Scholarship Foundation awarded $8.4 million in scholarship funding to 2,688 students, with the average award for undergraduate students being $3,207 and for graduate students, $9,065 on average. This year was particularly special as the Scholarship Foundation of Santa Barbara celebrated an important milestone when it reached the $100 million mark in total scholarships awarded during its 55-year history. Leaders say The Foundation is the first community-based organization in the country to reach that mark in financial support for students.

Special Recognition:
Santa Barbara County Fire

As our community continues to face volatile fire seasons, followed by risk of flood, we are extremely grateful for the outstanding team at Santa Barbara County Fire. When the alarm sounds, firefighters may encounter any number of life-threatening calls, including vehicle, hazardous materials, urban search and rescue, water rescue, and of course, vegetation fires. Santa Barbara County Fire is often the first one on scene in any disaster and is a model public safety agency. We are honored to recognize their effectiveness, regional strength and community attentiveness.


“This list of vibrant businesses and individuals really highlights how special the Goleta community is”, said Kristen Miller, President & CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce. “These individuals are making a huge impact on the Goleta community every day.”

The cost to attend Goleta’s Finest is $150 per person. A sponsored table for a group of eight is $1,500. Tickets must be purchased in advance. Please contact the Goleta Chamber of Commerce at www.GoletaChamber.com or (805) 967-2500 x5 in advance to secure your seats! Please join us on this memorable evening.

The 2017 Goleta’s Finest awards ceremony is presented by the Goleta Chamber of Commerce.

Special thank you to our Platinum Presenting Sponsors: American Riviera Bank, Buynak Fauver Archbald Spray, Community West Bank, Cox, Impulse Advanced Communications, Montecito Bank and Trust, Pacific Premier Bank, Rabobank, The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara Airbus, Spherion, and The Towbes Group.

We would also like to thank our Gold Sponsors: Cabrillo Business Park, Courtyard Marriott Goleta, Mariposa at Ellwood Shores, Marriott Residence Inn, Noozhawk and Signature Flight Support.

Silver sponsors include: Brown and Brown Insurance, Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, Deckers Brands, FLIR Systems, KARL STORZ Imaging, Latitude 34 Technologies, LogMeIn, Marborg Industries, Sansum Clinic, Santa Barbara Independent and Union Bank.

For more information, please contact the Chamber at (805) 967-2500 ext 5, or Michele@goletavalley.com

Study Shows Tourism Brings $1.9 Billion Into Santa Barbara’s South Coast Economy

Destination Analysts Inc. collected 1,801 surveys seeking to understand what attracts visitors to the region.

When more than 1,800 visitors were asked an open-ended question about what attractions or services would enhance their Santa Barbara South Coast experience, the most common response was “nothing,” according to the Travel Outlookpresented Thursday by Visit Santa Barbara.

The study by Destination Analysts Inc. was done for Visit Santa Barbara.

The tourism organization released findings from its 2016-17 Santa Barbara South Coast Visitor Profile and Tourism Economic Impact Study at its annual Travel Outlook event Thursday at the Hotel Californian.

“The news is very positive,” said Visit California President and CEO Kathy Janega-Dykes. “It’s incredibly important to collect this data so that we can measure and look at how behaviors change and patterns emerge.

“While the overarching picture is positive, this period is certainly not without challenges. We are dealing with some aggressive panhandlers to maybe a struggling retail industry — but the good news is tourism can and should be part of the solution as we shape the future of our community.”

Erin Francis-Cummings, president and CEO of Destination Analysts Inc., revealed the findings to more than 150 hospitality-industry professionals, community leaders, and city and county officials.

The study says Santa Barbara’s South Coast welcomed an estimated 7.2 million visitors between September 2016 and August 2017, representing an increase compared to 6.1 million travelers in a 2013 study conducted by the San Francisco-based tourism industry research company.

Visitor-related spending contributed $1.9 billion to the local economy, an increase from $1.5 billion in the 2013 study.

“Santa Barbara tourism is rocking,” Francis-Cummings said.

Traveler spending generates $56 million in local annual tax revenues for the communities in the South Coast region, an increase from $46 million in 2013, and supporting more than 13,000 direct jobs and generating a $1,031 annual tax benefit per South Coast household.

The study found that if the tourism industry disappeared, every resident in Santa Barbara’s South Coast region would need to spend an additional $13,241 annually to “maintain current economic standards.”

Francis-Cummings said visitors reported spending an average daily rate of $430.22, compared to $255.75 per day in 2013.

Dining (71.7 percent), going to the beach (55.5 percent) and shopping (42.5 percent) were noted as the most common activities travelers participated in during their trips.

The study shows 12.5 percent of surveyed visitors went wine-tasting in Santa Barbara, an increase from 6.4 percent in 2013.

According to the survey, 23.6 percent of visitors stayed overnight in Santa Barbara area hotels, inns or motels, with day-trippers representing the majority of guests at 69.3 percent.

The highest portion of domestic Santa Barbara visitors live in the Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County metropolitan statistical area at 41.8 percent, followed by the Ventura area with 15.7 percent.

The top out-of-state markets include the metropolitan statistical area of Las Vegas at 1.8 percent and Tucson, Arizona, at 0.8 percent.

The tourism market research firm says two-thirds of visitors surveyed arrived to the South Coast by car.

The second most common method of arrival is by train, up 19.3 percent from 6 percent in 2013, and followed by commercial airline.

The event included a presentation from Peter Kageyama, an author and expert on the relationship between places and people.

Kageyama offered insights on how to create a thriving tourism destination in his keynote presentation titled “For the Love of Santa Barbara.”

The event also featured a panel discussion of CBRE Hotels Managing Director Jeff Lugosi, executive director at Downtown Santa Barbara Maggie Campbell and president and CEO of the Goleta Chamber of Commerce Kristen Miller.

The group discussed future lodging projections, opportunities and challenges in Santa Barbara and the city of Goleta.

Lugosi said the hospitality market is in the midst of a seven-year upward cycle.

“We don’t see any signs of it slowing down — there’s nothing economically on the horizon that’s going to shut down the hotel industry,” Lugosi said. “People are going to continue to travel. We see positive signs.”

Ryan Parker, general manager at the hotel Canary Santa Barbara, moderated the dialogue.

The two-hour event was followed by a cocktail reception at the Hotel Californian.

By Brooke Holland, Noozhawk Staff Writer | @NoozhawkNews | October 19, 2017 | 9:59 p.m.

TechTopia Summit Shows What’s Happening in the Goleta Business Community

The site of commercial and industrial space along Hollister Avenue kicked off a tour this week focused on Goleta’s future business growth, in which attendees got glimpses of the city’s assets, opportunities and challenges.

Some 100 community members, including business leaders and some Goleta City Council members, took part in the Goleta Chamber of Commerce’s TechTopia Summit event, including a bus tour and panel discussion.

“It’s amazing how many businesses we have doing such incredible things,” said Kristen Miller, chamber president and CEO.

“In the last decade, we have heard more entrepreneurs and investors refer to our lush, laid-back landscape as a utopia, and our vibrant array of science and technology businesses as a technology hub — if you squish those together, someone coined the phrase ‘techtopia.’”

Starting at the Cabrillo Business Park property, the bus tour made its way towards Old Town Goleta, passing properties near the Santa Barbara Airport, the Village at Los Carneros and the Camino Real Marketplace.

More than 40 locations were noted during the narrated tour.

The two Santa Barbara Airbuses rolled by Deckers Brands and FLIR Systems, two companies with buildings at the Cabrillo Business Park. UC Santa Barbara and the U.S. Department of Agriculture also acquired land or occupy space on the 965,000-square-foot business park.

Pacific Beverage, a division of Santa Barbara-based beverage and food distributor Jordano’s, was highlighted in the business park area. The 102,000-square-foot regional distribution center broke ground in 2016, and the company paid $10.6 million for the land on Coromar Drive.

The buses motored in Old Town Goleta, then past the two-story, 152,000-square-foot Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital.

Old Town Goleta improvement projects were on display, such as the new Old Town park on a vacant 4-acre lot on the corner of Hollister and Kellogg avenues.

The Magnolia Sidewalk Infill Project is underway to replace deteriorating walkways along both sides of Magnolia Avenue from Hollister Avenue south to Gaviota Street, and there is a new high-intensity activated crosswalk signal installed next to the community center.

The Ekwill and Fowler Roads Extension project would install roundabouts at the Pine Avenue intersection with Ekwill Street and the Hollister Avenue and Highway 217 ramp intersections. The California Transportation Commission pushed back construction to begin in 2019 due to a shortfall in gas tax receipts, according to city staff.

Other city projects include potentially installing 42 angled parking spaces on the east side of Magnolia Avenue between Mandarin Drive and the railroad tracks.

One of the tour guides was Francois DeJohn of Hayes Commercial Group, who is also a member of the chamber’s board of directors.

He pointed out the City Ventures Old Town Village, a mixed-use project on Kellogg Avenue featuring 175 units to be built on a 12-acre agricultural parcel, west of South Kellogg Avenue and Kellogg Way. The project broke ground in March 2016 and is expected to open by the end of the year.

Near the Fairview and Hollister intersection, construction is underway on a 35,000-square-foot parcel at 151 S. Fairview Ave., which is the new home of America’s Tire.

The store is neighboring Big Brand Tire & Service, a tire and auto service business.

Motorists driving on Hollister Avenue can’t miss Direct Relief’s new 155,000-square-foot, 40-foot tall facility on Santa Barbara Airport property at 6100 Hollister Ave.

Direct Relief is planning to move from its current overflowing facility at 27 S. La Patera Lane in Goleta into the new storage and distribution warehouse in January 2018.

The tour guide hinted that the city of Goleta is in discussions with Direct Relief to possibly buy the warehouse when the nonprofit vacates the property near Goleta’s Amtrak Station.

The Hollister Avenue high-technology corridor was highlighted during the tour. The area is near the corner of Storke and Hollister within proximity to UCSB, the airport and the Camino Real Marketplace.

Other recent project noted include the UCSB housing on Storke Road, the Ice in Paradise skating rink, the 118-room Marriott Residence Inn at 6300 Hollister Ave., the 176-unit Cortona Apartment Complex on a nearly 9-acre vacant, triangular parcel at 6830 Cortona Dr., and the Hilton Garden Inn project at Hollister Avenue and Storke Road.

Also mentioned in western Goleta were the Coronado Butterfly Preserve, and businesses in the 7400 Hollister area, including InTouch Health, LogMeIn and Moog Inc.

The list also included a vacant lot at 7952 Hollister Ave. in western Goleta slated to be the new fire station and The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara.

After the tour, the group ate lunch in the Rotunda at Deckers Brands and a panel of speakers discussed business challenges in Goleta, and advice.

The panel included Flir Systems’ vice president of operations Rich Antles, M. Special Brewing Co. co-owner and brewmaster Josh Ellis, alongside Tim Wright, vice president/strategy & service line development at InTouch Health, Deckers Brands Chief Operating Officer David Lafitte and Dan Weigel, vice president of people and culture at Apeel Sciences.

The panel noted the lack of affordable workforce housing in the region and lack of public transit options for employees who commute as challenges in Goleta.

“There are challenges, but there are also benefits of being a small business community,” Lafitte said.

Gurbax Sahota, president and CEO of the California Association for Local Economic Development, presented the keynote address and spoke about the organization’s dedication to advancing its members’ ability to retain and create jobs.

By Brooke Holland, Noozhawk Staff Writer | @NoozhawkNews | October 13, 2017 | 8:35 p.m.