I’m a Santa Barbara local with some ideas on how to bring State Street to life and thriving again to help small business owners to create more revenue to be able to keep their biz open and afford to stay. We have to create excitement for locals and tourists to have a place to shop and also have some fun places to explore. They can take those memories with them and share with others and create a buzz to have more people visit us.
I have lived here for 40 years. State Street was fun growing up. We had a lot more stores and a lot more activities to do that kept us out of trouble, and we played outside, not on our phones. We interacted with others and spent more time with family.
I think we need to bring back stores like Piccadilly Square, where there were many shops inside a big building. It would be great to have that where the Macy’s sits downtown. Imagine a climbing rock wall in there, or some activities for adults and kids to enjoy while waiting on a shopper. Keeps them busy and engaged; brings families together and coming back. It would keep people downtown, to have lunch and dinner after; give surrounding shops and restaurants more business.
I love that lower State Street has been revamped. With organic markets, wine tasting, and many great restaurants, I think there should be live music: a rotation of musicians who play so that the thirties-and-up crowd can enjoy an evening out. After dancing they get thirsty ‘n’ hungry which leads to dinner which brings more biz to surrounding restaurants.
Being a small biz owner myself, the city made it very hard for me to keep my place open in Paseo Nuevo. Shared business spaces should expand. Open up the empty buildings and split them up so small biz owners can rent part of a space and share with other vendors. With high rents for an office and high rents for apartments, it’s impossible to have a biz in this town. But we need it. It’s killing off tourism as there’s not a lot for them to do here which kills revenue.
Locals have nowhere to shop and are forced to order on line or out of town. It’s not helping our economy and job security in Santa Barbara, and it forces people to move away.
I think to have a biz in front and apartment in back is a great idea!
The city needs to work with business owners a lot more and faster to speed up the process of license approvals. Businesses should be able to open in this town in a reasonable amount of time.
Let’s make Santa Barbara amazing again!