2006 Was the Year Retail Blossomed in Downtown
1/23/07 - 2006 was a banner year for development in downtown Reno, for both residential and retail projects.
In 2006, more retail has cropped up downtown than in the last five years combined. Del Mar Taco, Coldstone Creamery, and Divine Ultralounge all moved into the Theater Corner Parcel Project, on the corner of First and Sierra Sreet. Across the street, in the soon-to-be-completed Palladio, a sushi restaurant from Sacramento and Starbucks have made plans to move in on the ground floor, and there are rumors of Port of Subs and even a possible Melting Pot store going in as well. Kiddy-corner to the Palladio, Silver Peak has completed their expansion, nearly doubling their seating capacity. Across the street from Silver Peak, at 100 North Sierra, new owners purchased the old JC Penney Building, now known as the ‘antique mall’ and have big plans for the space. Up Sierra Street one block, Longs Drugs is due to open in July 2007, and its new façade is looking great. Across the street from Longs Drugs, 210 North, a posh new night club, occupied the upper floor of the building, while an Italian restaurant is slated to open sometime in 2007 on the ground floor, and rumors of a health club going in on the basement level.
The West and First St neighborhood downtown, known as WeFi to local residents, is another area that experienced a surge in retail in 2006. The World Board Shop, Far East Corner, and Se7en Teahouse all took up residence in Arlington Tower’s retail spaces, some of which had remained empty for years. Jungle Vino, a more sophisticated accompaniment to Java Jungle, opened to great fanfare, and Imperial Bar and Lounge as of this writing is slated to open in February at 150 North Arlington. Sierra Tap House, located on 1st and Arlington facing the river, opened under the radar with little publicity, but has quickly caught on as a neighborhood hang out with outdoor seating, where you can sip a Sierra Nevada beer while listening to the Truckee and people-watch. On West Street, the Residences at Riverwalk Tower is expecting to complete its 40,000 square foot ground floor retail conversion in 2007, catering to primarily restaurant spaces.
Heading south on Sierra Street, we head into the business district, where Paisan’s Old World deli opened its downtown store in the Museum Tower last year. It instantly became a hit with business folk, with foot traffic being the primary customers (very little parking around the deli unless you park in the garage).
We end our tour of new retail downtown with the Virginia Street Plaza, an attractive new mini-strip mall where tenants Beyond Juice, Kokopelli, and Quiznos all debuted recently.
In the coming two years, there will be a lot of new downtown residents to enjoy the new retail and dining choices. The Montage (former Golden Phoenix), Belvedere Towers (former Sundowner), Palladio, Denovo (Kings Inn project), Grant's Landing, 8OnCenter, and Thoma Lofts are all estimated to be completed in the coming few years.