Hollister Ranch Public Access Program

Apr 3, 2019 | Content Types, News, Public Access

Hollister Ranch Informational Update

These slides accompanied a presentation by Joseph Porter and Philip Schlatter at the April 5, 2019 Commission meeting in Madera, California. The presentation highlights some of the products of survey and drone work performed in late 2018 and early 2019. Among the items discussed are considerations with the mean high tide line, the quality of captured drone imagery, and some of the products generated with Drone2Map photogrammetry software. Videos of drone flights and generated 3D Models included in the presentation are available through the Commission’s YouTube account and are also at the bottom of this page.

Staff Report Meeting Webcast

Hollister Ranch Informational Presentation (PDF)

Aerial drone photo of Hollister Ranch beaches

California’s iconic coast is home to many of California’s precious natural, cultural, and historic resources. The public policy of protecting, expanding, enhancing, and promoting public access to the State’s coast, tidelands, and waterways is embodied in California’s Constitution, numerous laws and the common law. California is a world leader in protecting its coast and advancing the right of all people to access and enjoy our beaches and ocean.

Hollister Ranch is a 14,500-acre gated subdivision in Santa Barbara County that includes 8.5 miles of publicly owned shoreline, though no public access. The Gaviota Coast, of which Hollister Ranch is a significant part, is the least accessible stretch of coast in California, with less than 2 miles of publicly accessible shore in more than 60 miles of coastline.

In 1981, the California Coastal Commission adopted an initial Hollister Ranch Public Access Program, which was updated a year later. The final adopted program called for a phased and monitored approach to opening and managing access to the Ranch. Despite numerous legislative, legal and administrative efforts over several years, there is still no public access to the 8.5 miles of coast at Hollister Ranch, 37 years after a public access plan was adopted.

In 2019, the California Coastal Commission, State Parks, the State Lands Commission and the Coastal Conservancy will work collaboratively to update the Hollister Ranch public access program to finally provide long-delayed public access to the coast at Hollister Ranch. The agencies recently entered into an interagency collaboration to do just that. As part of this effort, the Coastal Conservancy is seeking proposals to facilitate meaningful public engagement to inform the public access plan update.