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Beach park in Goleta closed for "nourishment operations" after major storm damage

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Santa Barbara County Public Works
Goleta Beach Park is closed as county crews work on sediment restoration.

Santa Barbara County has closed public access to Goleta Beach Park after the recent storm washed away large chunks of sand.

Goleta Beach Park remains an active emergency response site after the county proclaimed a local emergency last Monday during the storm. Public access to the park at Sandspit road will be closed for emergency beach nourishment operations after the storm created heavy waves.

“Any large storm is going to bring large waves, which will impact the beaches, and so this storm was no exception,” Public Information Officer for Santa Barbara County Public Works Department Lael Wageneck said, “It definitely took away some of the beach with the heavy waves that came in.”

Goleta Beach Park is closed to allow crews to transfer sediment caught in debris basins onto the shore to protect the beach from further erosion. Wageneck said this will also help prevent future storm damage to surrounding communities.

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Santa Barbara County Public Works
Goleta Beach Park is closed as county crews conduct "beach nourishment operations."

“The reason those basins are there is to protect the communities below them,” Wageneck said. “It prevents that large material from getting further down into the creeks, clogging things up, leading to flooding. So we want to get there as soon as possible to remove that material from the debris basins.”

Sediments from these debris basins will be used to replace the large chunks of the beach washed away during the storm.

“So by placing that material in the surf zone, letting the wave action move it around, you are, in a sense, rebuilding the beach,” Wageneck said.

Operations began last week and will be going on 24 hours a day, seven days a week until next week. It’s not clear when the process will be complete, but county officials say they hope to reopen public access to the park as quickly as possible.

For public safety, access to the Obern Trail path is still open to commuters. Santa Barbara County officials are urging people not to use the path for recreational use.

More information on the County’s response to the local emergency can be found at

Amanda Wernik is a reporter and substitute announcer at KCBX. She graduated from Cal Poly with a BS in Journalism. During her time at Cal Poly, she worked as a news anchor for KCPR Radio and as an intern for the CJ Silas Show on ESPN Radio. Amanda enjoys surfing, reading, playing with her dog, traveling, and fronting her own rock band, Kiwi Kannibal.
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