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more articles like this

Downtown Makeover?
updated: Mar 17, 2017, 3:11 PM

By John Palminteri, KEYT News

More than 45 vacancies are reported in downtown Santa Barbara right now by commercial realtors. A study is underway to see if the current retail-restaurant mix is working or will the area need a makeover? Results will be out in April. Some people say the rents are too high. Some say internet sales have made an impact. Others say there is a draw down, at least for adult beverages and food, because of the Funk Zone. Macy's officially closes its doors in less than two weeks.

Read the full story here.

Comments in order of when they were received | (reverse order)

 ROGER DODGER agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 03:37 PM

Santa Barbara might be a ghost town soon.

 

 COMMENT 764126 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 03:58 PM

I don't go downtown because the homeless, the vagrants and the transients make it look seedy and unkempt. Not inviting or a place I'd want to go for a nice stroll and a little shopping.

 

 COMMENT 764129 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:02 PM

Aside from rents being too high here are my 2 cents about shopping downtown:
It's reeks of urine
It's dirty
Too many homeless/yoaches
Most stores are overpriced
Most shops aren't even places I would normally shop (I think it caters more to tourists than to locals and that is a shame)

 

 COMMENT 764133 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:07 PM

Greed is such an ugly thing...

 

 COMMENT 764134 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:08 PM

Too many homeless/transients.

 

 COMMENT 764135P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:10 PM

Why we don't frequent the downtown much:

1. Homeless & in-your-face beggars

2. Not much selection

3. High prices probably due to sky high rents

"Same old - same old"

 

 COMMENT 764136 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:12 PM

Lower the rent and get rid of the the vagrants.

 

 COMMENT 764138P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:13 PM

I went to Cost Plus World Imports the other afternoon, then walked up State 5 or 6 blocks. I smelled no urine and encountered no unpleasant people. Don't give up on downtown SB! It's really rather nice.

 

 COMMENT 764139 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:14 PM

I am a ghost of my former self. I love down town.

 

 COMMENT 764145P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:30 PM

Yea, well---blame it on a couple of things; primarily the HIGH COST of renting the store fronts; that problem has been going on for years--- and all the homeless/non-homeless who hang out and ask for money all along State Street (they are now asking for a buck--it used to be just change; inflation!)---oh, and that lovely urination smell you just can not escape. Retailers have a difficult time on the main drag because many people would rather shop in Goleta or take an early morning drive to Ventura to avoid the traffic. So it doesn't matter how the City reconfigures downtown; until some of those issues are resolved, Santa Barbara's State Street will just continue to go down hill and the retailers will continue to suffer.

 

 COMMENT 764149 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:47 PM

The Funk Zone taking customers? Give me a break. It's only Wine tasting shops. Most of the ambience is gone. The Cabrillo bridge project pretty much finished it off. Killed the Sunday Art Walk. Hey,I'm from OC and want to turn the beach area into another Huntington Beach! The millenniums don't buy much,want it for free. Then there's the 'Amazon effect.' The tourists have been avoiding SB for years now. The cruise ships don't contribute much,they eat onboard. The Harbor area is doing ok. The Harbor Dept. keeps the bums away and it's interesting there. Lots of parking. It's picturesque. Fun restaurants,Maritime Museum,boat tours,fun to walk around...

 

 CHACHA agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 04:52 PM

I mean, honestly, I grew up here in the 70s. There were bums back then, Lower state street was a craphole. There were literally hookers.

People love to complain about how horrible things are now, it's not so different.

The retail store closures are a combination of a global failure of physical retail being destroyed by online and in SB specifically because of overly high rents.

 

 COMMENT 764153 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 05:03 PM

Those were the good old days, CHACHA. I'd go back if I could.

 

 COMMENT 764155 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 05:12 PM

Whoever says the "market" is a perfectly self regulating entity is selling you a bill of goods. Why landlords would rather have building sit empty long term than drop the rent makes no sense. Maybe they believe State St will once again become a bustling mecca for brick and mortar retailers. Or that the next round of tax cuts and de-regulation will bring another golden age - just like 8 years ago.

 

 COMMENT 764161 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 05:45 PM

I still miss Fresh Choice. The Discovery store was cool too. And the La Cumbre Disney store. And Red Robin. Nothing good here anymore.

 

 COMMENT 764165P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 05:54 PM

The town needs a less delirious City Council.
It'll soon join the list of fabled "Far West Ghost Towns" otherwise ..
If you work long enough at destroying businesses : that's what you get.
Towns, States and countries have the "government" they deserve and that's what they deserve here ..

 

 COMMENT 764169 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:00 PM

A makeover?

Yea in the city council, that's where the makeover is needed.

 

 COMMENT 764172 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:05 PM

161-omg I can still taste fresh choice! I too loved the discovery store and I miss the Disney and warner bros store! I used to play in the battleship in back all the time.

Downtown is the perfect example of greed. Let's turn downtown into mom and pop shops again! It DOES smell like urine, I don't hate it downtown to point that I won't go but I try to limit my visits and every time I go I smell the same bum piss smell that I smell when I go to LA in the summer.

 

 COMMENT 764175 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:20 PM

Being approached & hassled by beggars, seeing the same RV parked for 3-days (in the 75 minute zone) at State & Carrillo while other cars ticketed, hearing our City Council support the status quo degeneration of our City Core w more subsidized housing, and then vote to expedite downtown's demise by funding more magnets to the homeless while voting to increase parking fees and reduce # of parking spaces, makes me and others drive 10 miles to LaCumbre or Calle Real to shop & dine. Only other option is to move out of SB. Wake up Council! You're asleep at the wheel pleasing the wrong constituents. We taxpayers & workers need representation. Who pays the City's bills?

 

 COMMENT 764176P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:23 PM

155: Thank the 'bought and paid for' Congress and the IRS, along with the small handful of rich landlords who own too much of this town. The current IRS rules make it more profitable for them to leave a few (or even more than a few) properties vacant and claim a write-off, then to lower the rent and get it rented. "Free market" indeed. The financial system is rigged, and the middle and working class are the ones paying the price, while the already wealthy continue to buy the "Representatives" who will do their bidding. [And I'm NOT a CA liberal, but a Libertarian. You have to be blind not to see how rigged the system is though.]

 

 COMMENT 764180 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:41 PM

Has nothing to do with rents. Or Democratic vs. Republican politics. I sold my (successful) businesses in Santa Barbara 1-1/2 yrs ago. Look at the big picture. Stand back, Disappearing Middle Class is why.

 

 COMMENT 764182 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:45 PM

Started going downhill after Piccadilly Square closed. The harbor is still great.

 

 SBDIVORCED agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:45 PM

Isn't Paseo Nuevo "owned" by City, we taxpayers, as it was funded & created by City of SB Redevelopment Agency?!? Rents were increased by City Council to pay SB's underfunded pension account promises to City workers, police, firefighters. Council voted 1 cent tax increase to help pay pension promises. Soon it all comes crashing down: 45 vacancies w all the locals losing their jobs is just the start. Council Reps long gone. Wake up: speak out- Contact each Council Rep: ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

 

 COMMENT 764185 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 06:51 PM

Combo of all but the homeless is terrible! Stinks like urine. Go down at night like I do on weekends and watch the homeless scare the vacationing families lile Ive seen. Nothing against the homeless but they dont need to be on State St where our city is dependant on sales tax and a pride of ours for tourists to see.

 

 COMMENT 764186 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 07:00 PM

LOW WAGE town, with HIGH RENTS. The Downtown can't survive with this and the Internet.

LOW WAGE Tourism and Service jobs represent over 30% of the jobs in town. No one has the cash to shop downtown.

RENTS are ridiculous and every available penny goes to this not shopping. Tourists are still renting out homes from those with illegal short term rentals. Fines are minuscule. Just the cost of doing business! - Rent's have jumped 20% in the last year. Wages are FLAT!

The idea of importing new residents for the AUD units won't help. Rents have to be affordable and that means they need to be much less than they are now. - And AUDs can be turned into HOTELS! Does that make sense?
OUR middle/upper classes live and shop elsewhere. - They are not coming back for HIGH AUD Rents. But new baby boomers or tourists will snap the places up. You'll still have the same problem.

 

 COMMENT 764189 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 07:07 PM

There's just as many in Santa Maria, and yet they are building a whole new shopping center. Go figure!

 

 COMMENT 764195P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 07:55 PM

Homeless

Fights in parking garages

Urine soaked sidewalks

High Rents

Weed smoke as you're walking the sidewalks

Many vacant storefronts that says the area is in major decline

'Nuff said

 

 SMARTYPANTS agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:04 PM

Cathy M. You paying attention???

 

 COMMENT 764199 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:05 PM

Commercial vacancies = more advantageous for owners to claim credits than to rent them for lower rates.

Property owners in this town don't give a flying eff.

Residential rents rising 20% every year. Every year!

Wages still flatlining.

John P, please report the real stories here.

 

 COMMENT 764200P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:10 PM

when a man asks me for money and i say i have no cash he offers to follow me to a bank ATM...I was born in SB and only go on lower state if i really have to...aargh...sick of this shit

 

 COMMENT 764201 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:12 PM

CHACHA, you could roll a bowling ball down State St at 10am and not hit anything in 1970s. The only people downtown worked for the government, banks, attorneys or accountants offices. Lower St had Joes and nothing else I remember except a liquor store. Then there were the lights on the 101 and running for your life to get to the beach.

 

 COMMENT 764202 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:14 PM

Retail is dead. Google it. It's not State St. It's every Main St.

SB needs to leave the retail model, and move to a more tourist friendly model - dining + vaca rentals like AirBnB.

If SB stays in the retail model, they will see less and less tax base every year.

Evolve or Die. - AB

 

 COMMENT 764206 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:16 PM

SBCC has a lot to do with rising rents. I am in a class which is filled with out of area and out of country students.

 

 COMMENT 764211 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 08:46 PM

On State Street when it was thriving, we had Ott's, Woolworths, JC Penney's, J Magnin, I Magnin, Casa Blanca Restaurant, the Chinese restaurant with the owner who wore bedroom slippers, Rexall drugstore. Probably more, but those leap to mind. And at the corner of Chapala Street and the 101, Sally Yater's Bikini Factory!
There was something for everyone back then.

 

 COMMENT 764228P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-17 11:14 PM

214. You inspired me to read the full article. Yep. I agree. Poor JP. Not everyone can write well.

Honestly, I don't see what all the fuss is about. Every single time I go downtown, no matter the day or time of day, the place is people running all over each other. Lots of shoppers carrying bags.

Back in the day, the streets used to roll up at 8PM. Now it is all go, go, go, day and night.

It looks to me like The City wants to revamp certain areas and is preparing us for that. Instead of more construction, which usually guarantees certain businesses will suffer and die, why not spend the money cleaning up the downtown area? There is definitely a need for a thorough cleansing. Cleaning out the panhandlers would be a great start.

 

 COMMENT 764237 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 06:28 AM

I don't go downtown often because the stores don't have much stuff I want. At least, not at the price I want to pay. Napkin rings for $25? Shirts for $75? No thanks. I'll go to Marshall's, restaurants, or entertainment venues (movies, symphony, etc.) but that's about it.

As for the homeless people, try making eye contact, saying hello, and wishing them a nice morning/afternoon/evening. They don't bite, especially if you treat them like humans instead of animals.

 

 COMMENT 764241 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 07:04 AM

Go for a hike. Go for a walk on the beach. Take a bike ride. Have a picnic in the park. Fly a kite. Go for a swim. Paddle out. Go for a run. Read a book. Plant a garden. Make something with your hands. Help a friend. Donate some time. Slow down. Help a stranger. Talk to old folks. Smile. The list goes on....

 

 COMMENT 764243 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 07:11 AM

Wife and I went downtown yesterday evening to have beer in front of paseo nuevo. One cannot simply sit there and relax on state street without having to deal without some indigent person with a sign or going around begging. I totally understand why many locals avoid State Street. The city needs to figure what they can do legally to clean it up otherwise State street will become skid row.

 

 ALONZO agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 07:18 AM

I come from generations of retailers…what has changed
is multi-faceted:
Big box stores suck the life out of small retailers.
Big box stores are often located far from traditional downtowns, sucking the life out of downtowns.
Cost of doing business, rents, insurances, advertising
has skyrocketed.

The immeasurable impact of online shopping.

Downtown SB in particular is suffering an identity
crisis. Plus the city has gone waaay overboard by painting
more and more curbing red and shortening free parking to
75 minutes in order to force consumers into parking
garages that have disgusting stinky stairwells and
elevators…Its mind boggling trying to keep up with the
ever-changing shops/restaurants that come and go.

 

 COMMENT 764248P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 07:24 AM

Clean it up. Soon even the tourists won't want to go there.
Not too long ago, I was chased by a homeless man because
I dared to look at him.....
Large portions of the street smell like urine....thank heaven for
the little bit of rain.
Also I agree with those who blame the internet.....
Mom and Pop stores? Selling what? If they could make money
they'd be there.

 

 COMMENT 764261 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:16 AM

I haven't been to the 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica for some time. Does anyone know if their level of vacancy approaches that of State St?

 

 COMMENT 764265 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:25 AM

Now that the drought is over how about a wholesale Power Wash of the filthy urine stenched parking garage walk ways and sidewalks covered with who knows what. The last time I was trying to walk on lower State Street I was appalled at how dirty the city was. Surely the Health Department must be aware of this. I spoke with a women who was shopping with her dog and suggested that when she got home that she wash the poor animals paws before taking the filth it would be taking into her house on its feet. I am not a germaphobe but lower State Street is a petrie dish for disease.

 

 COMMENT 764267 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:29 AM

now wait, are we talking about why downtown appears to be dying and all the reasons why, or are we talking about why we don't go downtown much anymore? high rents drive people out of downtown, it's that and nothing else. I have two friends who have moved their businesses because it was just too expensive. i don't go down much any more because it's too much of a hassle to park. homeless? really folks, that has been going on since i was a boy and believe me i am not a boy anymore. i would also say the shopping selection is not as exciting as it used to be. not really interested in shopping at Saks or any of the little boutiquey shops down there, sorry...i usually go downtown to go to a movie if anything.

 

 COMMENT 764268 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:30 AM

Blame can be cast upon internet shopping, in part... but let's call it like it is. This is the price we all pay for the destruction of our formerly lovely downtown. Who wants to park in urine stained, foul-smelling garages, deal with the same offending sites and smells on the sidewalks, and then be accosted by threatening yoaches and panhandlers? Wake up.... this is the price of being too 'PC' and entirely too liberal. Everyone pays so the City Council, Mayor and PD can coddle these folks to the detriment of the public, shop owners, tourists, etc. Destruction from within.

 

 COMMENT 764273P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:52 AM

265, drought is not all THAT over. Our rain is pretty much done for the year, I predict, and if everybody stops doing their water-saving tricks as we did all last year, we will be in deep trouble again by the [December] rains.

 

 COMMENT 764274 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 09:01 AM

I have visited here for 38 years, purchased 2 years ago.
From that perspective, the general economic conditions have always influenced retail vacancies, 35 years ago I was looking for a retail space and key money was going to be required to secure a location.
The projects on lower state that are in construction will in the near future bring the center of gravity of State Street south. Potential tenants are waiting, not committing now to existing.
Rents are always very sticky going down, for fear of causing a cascade in the market.
There have been minor things done such as removing a street sculpture that the homeless overwhelmed, it is and will continue to be an ongoing effort, too many for a variety of reasons can't or won't try any more in the mainstream.

 

 COMMENT 764275P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 09:05 AM

I walk downtown often, and am very very seldom asked for money. I smell no urine. I have a good nose.

And 201, I was downtown last night (St.Patrick's Day), and you could actually have rolled a bowling ball down State St - except for the blocks below Cota (where the bars are). I agree with you, Chacha. Lower State was a craphole until the early '90s. I had a friend in college who worked at the SB Hotel in the Schooner (?) donut shop on the ground floor in the late 70s. He was on a first name basis with all of the homeless folks who hung around at closing for leftover donuts. You didn't have any reason to go down there at night.

My office moved to the corner of State and Haley, and the company paid for self-defense classes for the employees - just in case.

And you people missing the "local" businesses - Discovery Store, Disney, Red Robin, Fresh Choice...What?!

If we're honest, most people choose to shop online or at discount stores than to pay the prices of local "mom & pop" stores. It's not just high rent - it's expensive to operate one store with high margins.

If you really want to bring back Santa Barbara, shop locally at local businesses. Hmm - like this one!

 

 COMMENT 764276 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 09:06 AM

I'dlike to see State street closed to cars for 5 or 6 blocks like Farmers Market. Open it up to outdoor cafes, shopping kiosks and entertainment. Give small business a chance to grow! People love the outdoor markets.

People want to relax, eat and shop in nice environments. What we have is a mix of idiot politicians pandering to the wrong people. The CoC is made up of lawyers and accountants, not small business. People want unique, not cookie cutter. Chains offer nothing to locals or tourists who find the same stores with the same wares in every town they visit or via Amazon without parking hassles or beggars begging.

Vote out the entire CC. They have done nothing to improve the city. In fact, they only know how to spend money that we dont have on things we dont need.

 

 COMMENT 764280 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 09:20 AM

Hey city council & mayor: Wake up & smell the feces! The bums are a MAJOR problem why locals avoid DT, as noted by The comments. People have crapped right in the door of my State Street shop.
Yes, high rents, nonsense parking and downtown assessments, sign enforcement (not on corporate stores) the city levies and the net hurts. Our shop is online & on the street & we are grateful for the support of locals for 10 years now. I also have a realistic landlord so I can survive. Question is, for how much longer? Place is starting to feel like Venice Beach. City Clown-sell returns $30 million in state funds to help mentally challenged homeless; really? It's true! They are accountable to no one.
Why no bums seen below & thrive here?
Montecito Solvang Ojai La Jolla Carmel + many other towns with locals/tourist blend DT
Maggie Campbell cares as do private citizens who are not being heard.
Rant over for now!

 

 COMMENT 764284 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 09:58 AM

I find it odd how many posts claim they want mom and pop, or community style, local business downtown.

Yet shop at all the chain stores, yell for a target, and cheer when another Starbucks is opened.

If you don't buy from a local where do you think the money goes? If you go out of town for your shopping, what city benefits from your purchases? What mom and pop business survives? Not a local one!

The one you went to for a cheaper price, but yet cry when the rents are sky high and all you can find are chain stores that sell the same cloths to every city.

Lots of finger wagging, but yet no one realizes that what they do, contributes just as much to our current retail environment.

Buy local, no matter what. People have said it before, speak with your wallets. The difference is, people don't want to pay more. Even if the outcome would be a better community business environment

 

 COMMENT 764289 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 10:17 AM

I have a State Street business and its not all gloom and doom. You have to adapt your model to current shoppers. Old school retail is gone, but then so are fax machines. Evolution pure and simple. Dont expect shoppers to be loyal, they could care less. The want amazon prime, free shipping etc etc. We do lots of business with the tourist market and as a retailer we offer free shipping etc. You have to be very proactive in Social Media Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and places like Etsy are a great place to get new clients. Retail is not dead as long as you keep up with the trends in shopping paterns. There are still lots of opportunities for retailers. The majority of shopping is still done in person , albeit a slim majority. Fight for your slice of the pie.

 

 COMMENT 764302P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 11:23 AM

As so many have commented, State Street should probably be renamed Stick Street due to the pervasive odor of urine when walking.

Park in a City parking garage & you are almost always knocked over by the stench of urine from the stairwells, elevators & walkways leading in & out.

Turn the corner where there's a little alcove & you find a full blown outdoor toilet on the sidewalk with everything you can imagine.

Come on City - Will this once great street ever become a priority?

 

 COMMENT 764303P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 11:24 AM

Put a Target downtown and you will have shoppers who are now driving to Ventura to shop!!

 

 COMMENT 764308P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 11:30 AM

What is the real reason SB & Goleta have kept Target out?

It's just like what's the real reason Goleta will not allow Costco to put in a gas station like most others in the chain?

Even the new Santa Maria Costco that's under construction will have 36 state-of-the-art pumps & it's going in across Betteravia Road from, yep, you guessed it, another gas station!

 

 MESARATS agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 12:03 PM

I don't know anyone who avoids downtown because of the homeless. If you think State is sleazy now you would have hated it in during the 70's-80's. The difference is there were less, they were permanent residents and we knew them. This is not isolated to Santa Barbara and the numbers are increasing everywhere, even in Iowa City and who would choose to be homeless there in the Winter.

La Cumbre Plaza doesn't attract a lot of homeless, but they aren't packing in the shoppers either. What both have in common, is being common. National chains and brands you can find anywhere in the country. Buying stuff out of a fake Spanish style mall doesn't improve the merchandise. Santa Barbara has become just another So Cal tourist attraction.

DT Ventura is more unique, old style street parking, mostly local shops, restaurants and close proximity to the beach area and fairground. They still have some funk left and a thriving local art scene. Hopefully they won't screw it via redevelopment. It is a more sustainable model and more in line with predicted trends in brick and mortar retail. Smaller stores, personal service, niche markets, unique experiences, but also incorporating technology for efficiency as well as bridging some of the online gap.

 

 COMMENT 764326 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 12:45 PM

The reason that downtown Ventura is now in better condition is that the city has taken steps addressing the vagrant problem. I think they have some kind of "homeless" facility away from the downtown area.

It is wrong that these vagrants have taken over our downtown area. It is currently MUCH worse than it has ever been.

 

 COMMENT 764330 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 12:55 PM

We need more public restrooms. The homeless and drinking crowd have no choice but to relieve themselves in the stairways. I would spend more time downtown if the parking were free for the first two hours.

 

 COMMENT 764331P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 01:05 PM

I'm not entirely comfortable walking in the lower State Street area and I also don't go downtown to shop. I do shop online and also drive to Ventura/Camarillo, mostly to go toTarget, but I shop at other places down there too - I make it a day out. Also, the downtown SB restaurants are all way too pricey for average residents.

 

 COMMENT 764333 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 01:08 PM

The problems and poor management of the downtown shopping core have been growing problems for years. Many have warned the city government and the merchandising organizations that things like increasing traffic, overbuilding and over population density, narrowing streets and promoting congestion, removing of parking to force people to ride the bus, walk or ride a bicycle, the tolerance (even encouragement) of vagrants and transients, the alteration of the mix of business entities weighting tourist and college student oriented businesses over others in a belief that the short term tourist and funk zone dollars are a quick revenue "fix" for the poor management occurring and the long range planning needed. Policies that entice landlords to charge excessively high rents as well. I am afraid the needed fix is beyond our present political zeitgeist.

 

 COMMENT 764335 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 01:13 PM

Agree with many responders & add;
If the Mayor had read the multiple business plans I offered 4yrs ago, none of this would be an issue.

 

 COMMENT 764342 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 01:42 PM

But have you seen the article on Noozhawk? Now the homeless, vagrants, yoaches, transients are taking over and fouling our library to the point where custodial services are required every hour! Staff have to take mental illness training. This is crazy and far exceeds the mission of a library which should be to serve all comers for LIBRARY services, not to be a place to bathe, store belongings, squat, provide mental health service and cause an excessive expenditure for the hourly clean-up of restrooms, etc. Who wants to take their children to a library such as ours?

 

 FLICKA agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 02:34 PM

265, "Now that the drought is over", are you kidding? I agree, a power wash would be a good thing but thinking the drought is over is wishful thinking, just has a lower designation.

 

 COMMENT 764360 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 02:46 PM

Maybe an active earthquake down the middle of State St will get rid of the piss smell and then start over with a new retail zone with all new shops and transients will give up on "paradise" called SB.

 

 COMMENT 764363P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 02:53 PM

Until the business owners squak to the City Council & business association & do it every meeting - nothing will be done other than more gum flapping & spending another few hundred thousand on a report.

A public restroom could easily be stationed by the awning covered blacktop patch by the LaFond's or whatever it is these days.

How about one behind Saks?

Come on folks we need viable ideas.

 

 ROGER DODGER agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 03:27 PM

If it were a ghost town then maybe the Haves would move somewhere else...

 

 COMMENT 764368 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 03:46 PM

Business will come back to State St. and Milpas, as it always has, but probably in a different form. If you live in Santa Barbara, have a cell phone, a computer, and a roof over your head, then you are a "Have." LOL at the Haves who never h-a-v-e enough, and then claim that they are a victim or a Have Not!! "Did the check come in the mail yet, Maybel?" LOL!! The Haves have it made here.....

 

 COMMENT 764373 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 04:14 PM

Many mention the landlords who take tax credits, leaving urban blight empty store fronts, but no one mentions WHO they are. Many are given awards and held up as shining examples of SB citizens. Meanwhile the city government discusses repaving State st. sidewalks for the umpteenth time in thirty years. Unfortunately, to paraphrase Al pacino, SB is a big wh0r3 with her legs spread waiting to get f......"
SB would be much better off if many of it's "movers and shakers" moved and then shook elsewhere, regardless of how many generations they have been here. Picadilly Square was real, Paseo Nuevo is pseudo and privatized a public street, not to mention harming businesses in El Paseo and elsewhere at taxpayers expense.

 

 COMMENT 764374 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 04:20 PM

State Street begs the question: Is this the portal to Hades?! Filthy sidewalks, people passed out drunk or drugged in the middle of the afternoon, drug deals and boozing out-in-the-open is now the norm. It has so atrociously taken over formerly nice shopping areas, the library and museum areas, etc. – these conditions, along with a variety of crimes, exist in Santa Barbara in a depth that boggles the mind.

An asleep or passed-out male was sprawled on the grassy area in front of the library mid-afternoon Friday. Soon after, another asleep or passed-out (smelled boozy) man was half-blocking passage on Ralph’s steps. Pity for those poor souls is one thing, but an effective remedy would serve them better.

 

 COMMENT 764376P agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 04:34 PM

374 - NO remedies will be had until the City Council gets so P***** off they decide to actually find a solution & try it.

Until that happens, enjoy the urine stench, in-your-face homeless & the other unsavories that accompany this noxious problem.

If we don't address the homeless & find a place for them or run them to Mar A Lago- kiss it off.

 

 COMMENT 764379 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 04:42 PM

Downtown smells like urine.
The streets are dirty.
Not pleasant.

 

 COMMENT 764383 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 04:55 PM

City Gov. needs to be embarrassed and publicly shamed on an international scale, then maybe something will be done. As soon as the City is stigmatized with the reputation of being a homeless destination/sanctuary with aggressive panhandlers and urine saturated streets, tourism should take a significant hit leading to lower bed tax revenue. A solid social media campaign exposing the problem with photos, video's, and interviews would do the trick.

 

 COMMENT 764384 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 05:15 PM

The urine smell is probably in part contributed by dogs being walked on State St. Should we make it unlawful to walk dogs on State St. when we kick out all the "vagrants"?
I'm sure at least a few people who read this will be inflamed!

 

 COMMENT 764402 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-18 08:25 PM

MESARAT- agree about Ventura. I heard they chased out all the bums to get it cleaned up. I would much rather have the old SB back. The building going on at the bottom of State and Cabrillo was the straw on the camels back. Too big, tall and ugly. The Marc on State and La Cumbre is like a crappy Vegas hotel. Where are these things getting approved! This place is a joke now.

 

 COMMENT 764504 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-20 07:06 AM

The city is just to dam friendly to the bums. Too many services cater to them. Word on the street is SB is a homeless sanctuary. Stop feeding the pigeons if you want to get rid of them.

 

 COMMENT 764542 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-20 10:15 AM

Someone pissed in the elevator at City lot 9.

Taking my little girls to fiesta 5 for a movie was lol. Park, open elevator piss all over the place. Stairs piss all over the place. Get to the ally next to Marshalls piss spilling out of the city bathroom. Walk 50ft to movie have to say No I don't have any money to 5 pan handlers. Get out of movie repeat No I don't have $$ to 5 pan handlers. 1 had to be on acid or some drug. Get to the stairs reeks like weed oh and piss. Carry girls up the piss steps and run home.

Such good times!

 

 COMMENT 764632 agree helpful negative off topic

2017-03-20 03:19 PM

I used to work, shop, eat, go to the gym and the library and movies DT. No more. Even though my work is still close (walking distance) I don't shop or go DT anymore. Too many creeps accosting you for $, disturbed ppl screaming obscenities at no one, etc. Last time I had to go to the City Offices I ended up with feces on my shoes. No thanks! I'll drive to Goleta for the gym and library and shopping, thanks!

 

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