UC Santa Barbara is working with our funding partners, the State Coastal Conservancy, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the California Natural Resources Agency (Urban Greening Program), the Department of Water Resources (Urban Streams Program), the Ocean Protection Council, and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Greenhouse Gas Sequestration Cap and Trade funds and Proposition 1), to restore the former Ocean Meadows golf course to its natural state. In 2008,The Trust for Public Land purchased 64 acres of the now-closed Goleta course with $7 million of grant funding from several federal, state, and local agencies (link to partners page), and subsequently gifted the property to The Regents of the University of California, which is restoring, and will serve as the long-term steward of, the new North Campus Open Space (NCOS).
Project planning for the open space was based on both community values and scientific data. A community-based planning process conducted in 2013-14 with the Trust for Public Land identified the community’s desire for a naturalistic, simple public access program that supports wildlife viewing opportunities. Additional public meetings in 2015 incorporated the community in the planning process for the restoration portion of the project. UCSB’s Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration (CCBER) conducted preliminary research that provided guidance on such things as local plants, soil types, and habitat creation for the land’s final restoration plan created by a consulting firm (ESA).
NCOS extends 2.25 miles along the Ellwood-Devereux coast and connects several existing preserved properties including the City of Goleta’s Sperling Preserve at Ellwood Mesa and UCSB’s South Parcel and Coal Oil Point Reserve. The NCOS site will ultimately feature 136 acres of restored and preserved coastal open space featuring trails and boardwalks for public access and passive recreation. It will also be used for teaching, research, and community outreach. Restoration and preservation of wetlands and other habitat along Devereux Creek will be a primary focus for the property.
For more information, please see: UCSB Press Release.
The CCBER North Campus Open Space Newsletter is available here.
The Trust for Public Land has additional information about the property acquisition available here.
Other Ellwood-Devereux planning documents are available here.