The city of Santa Barbara Parks and Recreation Department — in partnership with One Community Bridge and Bienestar Latinx — is holding a community meeting Saturday afternoon on the topic of Ortega Park’s murals.
Attendees will be able to learn about the history of the murals and provide input on how best to preserve them in the new Ortega Park Renewal Project, which aims to improve the historic park by providing a diverse recreation complex with youth sports fields, a pool for swimming, splash play facilities, skate park, playground, community plaza, multi-generational zone with basketball courts and other features.
The project hit roadblocks as the planners tried to come up with a way to preserve the historic murals while modernizing the space. The Historic Landmarks Commission declined the most recent mural evaluation in February that recommended to destroy and replicate five of the murals and relocate two.
Community members voiced their opposition to destroying any of the murals, so the HLC requested a new report with more options preserving the original murals.
The community meeting will take place in Ortega Park at 1 p.m. on Saturday, and all members of the public are welcome to attend to voice their opinions on the future of the murals.