CARPINTERIA, Calif.--Architects shared their vision of the proposed Surfliner Inn Monday night.
They took part in a concept review Zoom meeting with the Carpinteria City Council, the Carpinteria Planning Commission and the Architectural Review Board.
The plan calls for a 30-40 room hotel on Linden Avenue in place of a current parking lot next to railroad tracks.
Supporters said the railroad location is an asset, not a deterrent.
The architect AB Design is known for designing boutique hotels and the Moxi museum in Santa Barbara.
The hotel would include a small cafe that would create dozens of local jobs.
After about two hours of discussion, the meeting welcomed public comments.
A handful of people who waited patiently outside of city hall were the first speakers. Between each speaker staff disinfected the area.
The first speaker, Marla Daily, held up cardboard signs, one with the number 1,024 written on it, another with the number 56. Daily said more than 1,000 people have been opposed to the project from the start, with less than 60 supporting the plan.
"How much proof do you want about how people feel about this concept. Please let people decide on the fate of the 3 parcels of property they own," said Daily.
Curt Connelly said he built his house nearby. He said the hotel will hurt the beach town character and that 9 neighboring households would not welcome the parking.
Another opponent said no one seems to be listening to the more than 1,000 Carpinteria residents opposed to the development and commercialization of Carpinteria."
One of the first supporters to speak said the project will help the community enhance parks and trails, improve off season tourism the town depends on, support small businesses, and offer young people workforce mentorship and internships.
Todd Jared agreed. He said, "I think this project is the right scale, the right idea at the right time for this city."
Jared said it will revitalize a town impacted by vacancies.
No vote was taken on Monday night, but some members of the public asked the council to give residents a vote.