Some Spring Cleaning on State Street

This week saw the first days of spring, as well as official closure of several more properties on State Street.

The biggest, the 141,000-square-foot, three level Macy’s department store at 701 State St., has been holding a fire sale since it was announced in January that it would be closing. It opened in 1990 and shut its doors for good March 27.

No official word on what might fill that huge, empty space in Paseo Nuevo, but once again some shoppers are hoping for a Target store.

Actually, there is an unconfirmed report that brokers are negotiating to bring a Target to the top floor of the Sears building at La Cumbre Plaza. Macy’s plans to keep its second Santa Barbara store in the plaza, while many more are closed around the country.

Other State Street closures include, but are not limited to the Radio Shack, 609 State St.

Meanwhile at the southern end of State Street, La Entrada moves along slowly as walls go up and clay tiles are secured on the roofs of buildings. The owner of the key element of the project, the Californian Hotel, reportedly said recently that the lodging business will open in May.

One year ago this month, the developer of La Entrada, Michael Rosenfeld, CEO of Woodridge Capital Partners, told a crowd of 200 at Santa Barbara’s El Paseo Restaurant that the project would be finished by this summer.

That appears possible, but it’s also apparent that recent rains have slowed La Entrada construction. A rooftop pool and spa are planned for the hotel.

A phone call to Woodbridge Capital Partners was met with a stone wall. A receptionist said no information on the status of La Entrada was being released by anyone. She said Rosenfeld was in a meeting.

He is founder of the Los Angeles-based real estate development and investment firm building La Entrada.

The project will be sprinkled with various retail shops and eateries.

While several new eateries are filling empty spots on State Street, at least eight former restaurant sites are closed permanently or supposedly for remodeling, such as Aldo’s, 1031 State St.

Primo Café, 516 State St., abruptly closed this year and shows no sign of being occupied by another eatery soon. Palazzio’s, 1026 State St., closed what seems like eons ago for renovations and still looks like it’s closed for good. The list goes on.

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