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Noozhawk: Staples Appears to Be Leaving Downtown Santa Barbara Location

Santa Barbara, California – Published 6/22/2018
By Joshua Molina
Staples building in downtown Santa Barbara

Loss of office-supply store would be another blow to the 400 block of State Street, which already has other vacancies.

The 400 block of State Street in Santa Barbara appears about to take another hit.

Staples, “the office superstore,” has not yet renewed its lease, according to Radius Group’s commercial real etate broker Steve Brown.

Radius is currently marketing the building at 410 State St. and looking for a new tenant.

Brown said Staples’ lease expires at the end of August.

“They haven’t renewed it,” Brown said. “It seems as though they are pulling out of there.”

Staples did not respond to calls and emails from Noozhawk requesting comment.

Brown said Radius has prospects for the property, but he declined to talk about specific clients.

“I hate to jinx anything,” Brown said. “What we are looking for is pretty much what is there, another big box retailer.”

He said a similar office retailer, a home goods store, sporting goods outlet or grocery store would make a good tenant for the site.

“It has a great parking and great visibility,” Brown said.

The 400 block of State Street has struggled over the past year, falling victim to a combination of chronic panhandling and homeless people who have settled into the street, and the retail economy shifting toward online.

Near Staples is a 99 cent store, and vacant buildings.

Ken Oplinger, president and CEO of the Chamber of the Santa Barbara Region, said the departure of Staples is a loss for the community, particularly the offices downtown that depend on supplies.

“It’s unfortunate,” he said.


KEYT: Staples closing large Santa Barbara store next month

Santa Barbara, California – Published 6/23/2018
By John Palminteri
Staples building in downtown Santa Barbara

Staples is leaving downtown Santa Barbara July 20, leaving another large building in the area vacant.

The 17,000 square foot office supply store at 410 State Street is near the corner of Gutierrez and does not open its door in the front, rather it has an entrance in the back on the parking lot side.

The Radius Group first told NewsChannel 3, and local commercial realtors last month, the store had not renewed its lease, due to expire this fall.

A new tenant is not expected for months. The site is being presented to prospective businesses with something many store in the downtown don’t have – parking. There are 77 spots on the site. It is also in an area that connects downtown to the waterfront and the Funk Zone. Thousands of vehicle trips a day go by the address.

Staples, known as “The Office Superstore”, informed its customers of the closure this week confirming the widely known timeline. The Goleta Staples in the Camino Real Marketplace will remain open.

As troubled as the 400 block appears with multiple vacancies now, the location is viewed by many brokers as an opportunity that is still to be realized.

For example, a former mid block large restaurant site and auto store is being converted into several smaller businesses under one roof including food and beverage offerings.

A Habitat Home store is moving into a corner vacancy with its first address in Santa Barbara to compliment its San Luis Obispo location.

The lowest rental offering in the area, at $2.00 a square foot, is making 427 State Street attractive according to broker Kerry Mann with Pacifica Commercial Realty.

The street has a mix of retail, restaurants and nightlife locations now.

The 400 block has been the focus of both attention from city officials and outrage from those unhappy with homelessness in the area that comes with associated issues such as liter, blocked sidewalks and several on going municipal code violations.

Not far away, several vacant stores have been leased and downtown is expected to see many new signs hung up and new foot traffic beginning this month. That includes Mollie’s Italian restaurant, Night Lizard Brewing, Industrial Ale and Creamistry ice cream.

The area was rattled by the loss of a three story Macy’s at the Paseo Nuevo Mall last year, but sources tell NewsChannel 3 a master plan for the building is coming together with new concepts and a revival of the vacant site with approximately 30,000 square feet. Across the street 7-Eleven is reportedly planning to take over a portion of 700 State Street which has been vacant more than a year.

Nearby is still a mystery on the future of four empty addresses in a row with Verizon, Tonic, CSRV, and Blush all closed in the 600 block.

Along the waterfront, Due Lune is opening where Eladios was located on Cabrillo Boulevard. It is an off shoot of the Tre Lune in Santa Barbara on Coast Village Road, owned by Gene Montessano.

The El Torrito site and bike rentals a block to the east is going to be two restaurants in with ocean front dining. That’s next to the recently opened Blue Water Grill, featuring a lighthouse structure and upstairs views of Stearns wharf and the harbor. The design was, in part, a modification when the Mission Creek improvement project took place.

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