Ellwood-Devereux History

The Ellwood-Devereux Coast Joint Proposal was a collaborative effort between the University, City of Goleta, and the County of Santa Barbara. The Proposal involved relocating future land development from the most sensitive areas on the coast, and preserving about 665 acres of open space for habitat, passive recreation, and public access. These areas will be preserved in perpetuity. Without the relocation coordinated by the three participating agencies, the benefits of preserving contiguous open areas could not have been achieved. The proposed land development included the Santa Barbara Development Partnership residential development at the Santa Barbara Shores Park property in Goleta, student and faculty housing on UCSB’s North and West Campus properties, and a residential development on the former Ocean Meadows Golf Course under the jurisdiction of the County of Santa Barbara (the golf course is now owned by the University and managed/referred-to as the North Campus Open Space).

The Joint Proposal and its broad range of programs were implemented after the three agencies sponsored the creation of a Joint Proposal Prepared an Open Space and Habitat Management Plan (Open Space Plan) and the subsequent Environmental Impact Reports (EIRs) for the Open Space Plan. Each agency took independent, but coordinated actions to approve the elements of the Joint Proposal under its separate authority. Actions in the Open Space Plan required approvals by the California Coastal Commission. The jurisdictions jointly prepared the Open Space Plan to guide management practices on 508 acres of open space, which complements existing management efforts by UCSB within an expanded 170-acre Coal Oil Point Reserve.

The Open Space Plan includes actions to preserve and restore sensitive coastal habitats and species, to manage public access and recreation to ensure compatibility with these resources, and to protect scenic resources. The Open Space Plan will provide an administrative framework and funding strategy to ensure the long-term management of the open space areas.

The objectives of the Open Space Plan are as follows:

  • Restore, enhance and create native habitats to improve the area's environment.
  • Protect resources from development.
  • Balance recreation needs with resource protection.
  • Further enhance the value to the Coal Oil Point Reserve.
  • Balance native habitat protection and expansion with the need to preserve or perpetuate significant tree resources.

For more information, please see:
Ellwood-Devereux Coast Open Space and Habitat Management Plan

Natural Resources of the Joint Proposal Area

The Ellwood-Devereux Coast is comprised of beaches, bluffs, undeveloped coastal mesas and sand dunes noted for their scenic beauty and environmental value. The lower Devereux Creek watershed includes seasonal wetlands, riparian habitat, and a coastal lagoon. Extensive areas of annual grasslands and one of the largest perennial native grasslands on the South Coast support raptors such as the white tailed kite. Massive groves of eucalyptus support one of the largest monarch butterfly over-wintering sites in the state.