February 4, 2023
You are here:  Home  >  Real Estate  >  Current Article

Retailers worry about state of State Street


These State Street spaces near the corner of State and Carrillo streets in Santa Barbara are vacant. Customers have walked into Amy Cooper’s Plum Goods storefront on State Street and asked her, “What’s going on with State Street?” The shoppers are noticing an unusually high number of empty properties along the retail destination that has…


    This article is only available to Business Times subscribers
  • Subscribers: or REGISTER for complete digital access.
  • Not a Subscriber? SUBSCRIBE for full access to our weekly newspaper, online edition and Book of Lists.
  • Check the STATUS of your Subscription Account.


  1. jpk says:

    I hear You… Unfortunately, the city founders are slow to change. To elaborate on the above the city planners have regulated and white washed our beautiful city into a decaying and boring retail corridor.
    Drive down State St and look at the architectural imagination of our planners. 99% of the buildings are white. Why is there no imagination regarding color? 75% of the buildings down look dirty or arer in disrepair.
    Your better retail tenants are leaving and looking elsewhere… Do you see many panhandling or homeless people on Coast Village rd? That area is vibrant and it attracts your upper end retail. State St. is declining and will continue to decline unless we take action. We see it now with increasing vacancies and lower rents.
    Our City planners are out of touch!!!!

  2. jpk says:

    The homeless people, Panhandlers etc is THE issue on State St. It needs to be eradicated. No Locale Families want to come to State St at night. This issue is also turning retailers away and will continue until to do so until this problem is solved. The City of Santa Barbara should be embarrassed to have let this situation go as long as it has…

  3. Hazarian says:

    I fully agree with your assessment; it is one I have shared by email on a number of occasions over the past few years with the City Council members. When coupled with the now ‘out of hand’ daily habitation in the Historic District by chronic beggars, ‘offensive smelling’ homeless, and the ever-roaming ‘rundown’ motor homes parked for days along the immediately adjoining streets, the situation has only worsened. If this trend is not reversed, I fear that the trickle down impact of this crisis will be eventually felt not only by the commercial property owners along State Street, but also by the residential property owners of this once sought after ‘unique’ locale along the California Coast.

    Thank you for bringing this to the attention of your readership… hopefully it will spark a heightened awareness for them to prompt our City leaders into embarking upon legislative reforms (strengthen the vagrancy regulations) and an active management role (establish a City-funded downtown redevelopment program) focused on returning the Historic District to its once-treasured status among tourists and residents. If a metropolis such as New York City was able to bring about such change, then hopefully our fair small city can also meet this challenge.