Buell­ton get­ting two new ho­tels — and one is named for Cam­bria

The Tribune (SLO) - - Local - BY BY JANENE SCULLY

A pair of new four-story ho­tels has earned ap­proval from the Buell­ton Plan­ning Com­mis­sion, but a re­lated meet­ing space has raised ques­tions about the num­ber of pro­posed park­ing spa­ces.

SY Val­ley Vine­yard Re­sorts ap­plied to de­velop the ho­tels on about four acres be­tween Mc­Mur­ray Road and Val­ley Vine­yard Cir­cle, just north of High­way 246.

Mul­ti­ple story poles topped with flags have des­ig­nated the fu­ture home for the ho­tels — re­ferred to as the Cam­bria Ho­tel & Suites and a bou- tique ho­tel — and their planned height on the site along Mc­Mur­ray Road across from Mc­Don­ald’s and the Santa Ynez Val­ley Mar­riott.

The project calls for two ho­tels, each with 107 guest rooms, to bring 214 new rooms to Buell­ton along with two res­tau­rants.

Ad­di­tion­ally, a sep­a­rate 4,400-square-foot meet­ing room would be shared by the two ho­tels and could host events for guests or the wider Santa Ynez Val­ley com­mu­nity.

In all, the three build­ings — with a con­tem­po­rary ranch ar­chi­tec­tural style — would to­tal 140,440 square feet.

Other fea­tures would in­clude two pools and a shared out­door open space, in­clud­ing an event lawn, out­door seat­ing ar­eas and a wa­ter fea­ture.

Some 222 park­ing spa­ces also are pro­posed, spark­ing dis­cus­sions about whether the num­ber would be ad­e­quate for guests stay­ing at the ho­tels, em­ploy­ees and peo­ple at­tend­ing events at the meet­ing room.

The Oak Springs Vil­lage Spe­cific Plan, also called the Vil­lage Spe­cific Plan, called for the de­vel­op­ment of a ho­tel along with as­sorted res­i­dences and re­tail busi­nesses that led to the open­ing of Trac­tor Sup­ply Co., Star­bucks and more at the site.

Along with a ho­tel, the spe­cific plan also would in­clude de­vel­op­ment of a 1.8-acre park.

Most of the dis­cus­sion Thurs­day night cen­tered on park­ing con­cerns and whether the site would have a suit­able num­ber be­cause of the ho­tel guests and meet­ing space at­ten­dees.

Re­quir­ing a tem­po­rary-use per­mit for cor­po­rate events or wed­dings would al­low pro­vi­sions for off­site park­ing, plan­ning di­rec­tor An­drea Keefer said.

“That’s why we added those con­di­tions and a tem­po­rary-use per­mit so through the tem­po­rary-use per­mit process we’re able to ad­dress the park­ing and maybe work out off-site park­ing and shut­tling into it,” City Man­ager Marc Bierdzin­ski said in re­sponse to a plan­ning com­mis­sioner’s con­cerns about in­ad­e­quate park­ing spa­ces.

“We had the same con­cerns you did.”

Staff also men­tioned adding a one-year re­view to an­a­lyze any po­ten­tial chal­lenges caused by events.

But ar­chi­tect Thom Jess of Ar­ris Stu­dio Ar­chi­tects and his client, Christo­pher Atkin­son of SY Val­ley Vine­yard Re­sorts, balked at pro­posed re­stric­tions to the meet­ing space, in­clud­ing the one-year re­view.

Re­gard­ing park­ing, a worst-case sce­nario with all rooms booked and an event planned at the site means there would be in­suf­fi­cient park­ing, but Jess said that is not re­al­is­tic.

“In re­al­ity, in an ev­ery­day sce­nario in most cases, there’s go­ing to be more than enough park- ing,” he said. “It’s go­ing to be a quar­ter-empty park­ing lot.”

Most events would in­clude ho­tel guests, so park­ing wouldn’t be af­fected, he said, adding that the ad­ja­cent re­tail cen­ter and on-street park­ing could pro­vide ad­di­tional space for night events, if needed.

While the project re­ceived com­mis­sion ap­proval, it is ex­pected to re­turn early in 2019 to fi­nal­ize some con­di­tions re­lated to park­ing, noise for events and other as­pects re­lated to the meet­ing space.

The new ho­tels would boost the num­ber of places where vis­i­tors could stay in Buell­ton.

“We wel­come and look for­ward to work­ing with the new hote­liers,” said

Shelby Sim, pres­i­dent and CEO of Visit Santa Ynez Val­ley. “As in­ter­est and overnights in­crease in the Santa Ynez Val­ley, more ac­com­mo­da­tions are a must.”

Buell­ton also gained a Hamp­ton Inn & Suites at 600 Mc­Mur­ray Road, east of Da­massa Road. The three-story, 61,692-square-foot ho­tel, which opened in 2017, added 99 rooms to the val­ley’s in­ven­tory.

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