Downtown HMB suffering along with the rest of us

By on Thu, January 15, 2009

Downtown landlords have been working with tenants to cope with the recession, reports Julia Scott in the County Times. 

Burlingame attorney Joe Cotchett, who owns seven buildings in town, actually lowered the rent for all his tenants by 10 percent last August. He will be lowering it at least another 10 percent through January 2010, he said on Tuesday. ...

Half Moon Bay real estate magnate Keet Nerhan said he has already lowered the rent for his tenants on Main Street and at the new Harbor Village Complex in Princeton, where 50 percent of his retailers have bailed on their commitment to lease a space in his indoor mall. He is also now waiving the monthly rent for several tenants. ...

Robin Jeffs, [Tu Pueblo Imports’] former landlord, has had trouble filling two of the three storefronts in his Francis Building since the tenants moved on.

"The story of high rents on Main Street is not the problem. The problem is the combination of not enough stores and not the right stores," said Jeffs. "We’ve not been able to raise rents in the last five years and now we’re having to reduce them, and reduce them quite sharply."

Why doesn’t someone ask the psychic on Main Street about what businesses would be great investments for downtown?

Speaking to Jeffs’ point of having “not enough stores and not the right stores” downtown, I’d have to agree.  I think this thread has already been covered here on Coastsider a few years back.  I believe the request was made for more stores that support locals’ needs, so that locals will support the stores, and to cut back on the tourist-type stores.  I believe the term “Carmelization” was often tossed about in that thread with heavy emphasis that we do not need any corporate-chain stores.

It would be nice to have along Main Street:

A dry cleaner, an ice cream shop, a great hamburger place (I’d been enjoying Cetrella’s fabulous, but pricey, $13 burger, but even they’ve closed), a dvd rental store, a cheap but tasty taqueria, a pharmacy, and even, a store that sells the right-sized vacuum filters.  :)

I know there are places elsewhere coastside that take care of some of these requests, but I’m talking just Main Street here.

The shops remaining on Main Street do work for locals, (aka: “the right stores”), and I truly hope they all survive this stretch we’re facing.  I find it completely possible to frequent these locally-owned businesses and not feel any need to drive over the hill or into Santa Cruz - except for those darn vacuum filters.

Comment 2
Sat, January 17, 2009 8:08am
Tammy Lee
All my comments

Seems like some of the other shopping areas in HMB outside Main St have more practical stores for locals.

Living in Montara, going to Pacifica was always more convenient than HMB.  Plus, when the slide closed, I grew to hate that drive down 1 and over 92 to reach my job in SF. 

Anyways, I now like going to HMB simply because New Leaf opened.  The quality and selection of their produce, and other food items, is great.  I have tied my trips to HMB to include other places I frequent now, too (banking, library).