I mentioned a few days ago that some of my testimony before the county planning comission was used in a documentary film The Price of Paradise (thanks again Lisa!)
The film was shown along with another documentary film Good to Great based on the research and book of the same title by Jim Collins. It was an interesting juxtaposition. During the Q&A an audience member asked what it would look like if the principles from the book were applied to the housing crisis in Santa Barbara. Basically the filmaker's comment was that we need level 5 leaders with imagination, commitment, and passion to change things. I would add to that, political will and a moral compass.
That said, every now and then something of imagination does happen here. There was a wonderful little house built in downtown Santa Barbara on a property that everyone thought was impossible to build on - the lot was only 20 by 20. It obviously isn't a house for everyone (each floor is a single room) but it is a fascinating little house that shows imagination. It certainly isn't an affordable house but as the LA times noted, 57 of them would fit inside Oprah's house... As more McMansions go up on the increasingly scarce free space in this beautiful area, perhaps this artsy little house can make us think in new ways.