About the Community of Goleta

Goleta is about 8 miles (13 km) west of the city of Santa Barbara, along the coast (the coast runs east to west in this portion of California). Nearby is the Santa Barbara campus of the University of California. Goleta has a mild climate with high temperatures normally within ten degrees of 70° year-round; low temperatures rarely fall below 40°. The 2010 United States Census reported that Goleta had a population of 29,888.

Background Information

The Goleta Valley was a prominent lemon-growing region during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and was largely agricultural. In the 1920s, aviation pioneers started using portions of the Goleta Slough that had silted-in due to agriculture to land and takeoff. As former tidelands, the title to these lands was unclear. Starting in 1940, boosters from the city of Santa Barbara lobbied and obtained federal funding and passed a bond measure to formally develop an airport on the Goleta Slough. The necessity for an airport – or at least a military airfield – became more apparent after a Japanese submarine shelled the Ellwood Oil Field in 1942. This was one of the only direct-fire attacks on the US mainland during WW II. The Marine Corps undertook completion of the airport and established living quarters on the site of the current University of California, Santa Barbara campus.

After the war, Goleta Valley residents supported the construction of Cachuma Lake, which provided water, enabling a housing boom and the establishment of research and aerospace firms in the area. In 1954, the University of California, Santa Barbara moved to part of the former Marine base. Along with the boom in aerospace, the character changed from rural-agricultural to high-tech. Goleta remains a center for high-tech firms.

The Economy in Goleta

The University of California Santa Barbara is the major center of economic activity in the area, both directly and through the numerous associated service industry activities which exist for the staff and students.  Deckers Outdoor Corporation is based in Goleta. Several technology sector businesses operate in the area due to the proximity to the university, including Raytheon, Citrix Online, Cisco, FLIR Commercial Vision Systems, ATK, InTouch, and Transphorm. The Bacara Resort also employs many residents.

All information about Goleta courtesy of Wikipedia. photo credit of Goleta Pier: Damian Gadal