Noleta is an unofficial name used to designate the unincorporated urban area between Goleta and Santa Barbara in California, United States. It is bounded on the east by Santa Barbara and Hope Ranch, on the west by Goleta, on the north by the Santa Ynez Mountains and on the south by the Pacific Ocean, and largely includes the zip codes 93105, 93110, and 93111. Approximately 30,000 people live in the area.
The area is called Noleta because of its history of voting "no" on incorporation with the City of Goleta (i.e. "no" to "Goleta"), and as a pun on the more famous neighborhood " North of Little Italy" in New York City. As it is unincorporated, the area is under county government administration. While Noleta has a history of voting "no" on incorporation, neither the City of Santa Barbara nor Goleta have attempted to annex the Noleta area. Both communities are reluctant to absorb the community because the area's tax base does not generate enough revenue to pay for the services it requires. Nevertheless, both cities compete to influence the community.
The reluctance of "Noleta-ers" to incorporate is largely based on a variety of reasons including:
- reluctance to have a Goleta address
- reluctance of some home owners to incur the regulatory restrictions of either Goleta or Santa Barbara
- differing views on the numbers, density and siting of new housing in the area.
As an unincorporated area of Santa Barbara County, residents are able to claim 'Santa Barbara, CA' as their address. This Santa Barbara mailing address is often perceived by residents to enhance property value. During the various Goleta cityhood campaigns, proponents of the city argued this was a false assumption.