SBUSD Drops Plan to Create Organic Farm & Learning Center at Hidden Valley Site

A proposal to create a working organic farm and learning center at Santa Barbara Unified School District’s 12-acre Hidden Valley property is not moving forward. School officials had been exploring the concept of a small farm and culinary arts program at the site, located at the southern end of Palermo Drive west of Veronica Springs Road in the area known as Hidden Valley.

After further review – including hearing from board members, neighbors and other stakeholders concerned about disrupting the environmentally sensitive natural habitat – the district has dropped the proposal. The Santa Barbara School Board voted unanimously on Tuesday to officially abandon the plan.

Steve Vizzolini, SBUSD Director of Facilities and Modernization, said the $1 million in bond money that had been allocated toward the initial development of the site will now be redirected back into the Measure J Elementary Bond fund, and can be used for other projects.