News 5-14-08 Urban Market Tenants

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Posted by: Justin - 5/14/2008 4:41:28 PM
I am soooo excited for this I can't even tell you! For the first time in my lifetime (I'm 30), I honestly feel like downtown is heading in the right direction. There is a real synergy and a feeling that the pieces of the puzzle are finally falling into place. Things may not happen as quickly as some of us may like, but the progress within the past 2-4 years is undeniable. I am truly excited and look forward to seeing downtown (at least the area near the river) 1-2 years from now. I'll be able to grab a bite to eat, catch a movie, do a bit of shopping, and even see a AAA baseball game all in one day....and within walking distance! Finally, downtown Reno is becoming a "real" downtown with attractions that all our citizens can enjoy and not just a 3rd-rate tourist destination with tacky, dated casinos, thrift shops, and liquor stores. (No offense to the casinos....god knows they offer their fair share of pluses as well, but I can't stand the garish decor or cigarette smoke)

Posted by: Mike - 5/14/2008 7:32:05 PM
Overall, this is wonderful! One extreme sore spot: Downtown Marketplace and Deli to "handle groceries". That place is extremely expensive. Prices far above what they should be. Comparable items sold much cheaper elsewhere, even in some of the corner stores downtown.

Posted by: Bugsy - 5/14/2008 10:40:57 PM
You are absolutly right Justin. Im so glad that I have a place in downtown Reno. This is Downtowns biggest retail project to date and hopfully it will start a chain reaction of retail downtown including my public enemy #1 location (ground floor to the riverwalk). I will be taking advantage of the fresh fruit stand and it will only take me a quick stroll across the street to enjoy. Cheers the the West steet Market. welcome to the neighborhood.

Posted by: Mark W. - 5/15/2008 1:09:17 PM
Regarding the Downtown Marketplace: it may be expensive, but it is also VERY convenient for many people. Additionally, the fact that it is not backed by a nationwide corporate entity precludes many price reductions and occasionally availability. I would love to see a "national chain" level of grocery store downtown, but this is a step in the right direction. Besides, there are many places that cater to specific needs/tastes at an increased cost - Whole Foods, World Market, many specialty/import/ethnic markets. What allows these places to reduce operating cost and lower prices is the increased patronage and support of local customers. I'm glad to know that if I need to get some ingredients for dinner that I can just walk five blocks and enjoy the river, instead of having to drive along Keystone to get to the stores up there. All I am hoping for now from the West Street Market is that future expansions include gradual multi-story additions to the buildings housing the marketplace.

Posted by: RenoSteve - 5/15/2008 3:20:20 PM
The city doesn't need to expand the West St Market concept UP - by adding more stories to the buildings. There is an entire closed down casino across the street that could eventually house many more shops and restaurants. There is the old Senator Hotel on the corner that could become home to new ground floor shops and restaurants. There is the building (5 star saloon??) between the south end of the West Street Market and Beaujolais Bistro that could be converted to markets or shops - as well as the old parking structures to the south facing both West St and the alley to the east - owned I think by Ross Manor. There is all sorts of vacant and underutilized real estate in the area that could - and may well - transform into a new "West Street Market District." The city has provided the start. If it is as successful as I anticipate - private business should should quickly step in and build a new district around it.

Posted by: Mark W. - 5/19/2008 4:12:23 PM
RenoSteve - not to sound antagonistic, but in my estimation, all growth should be up. I totally agree with you that the adjacent available buildings should be filled first, but my thoughts pertained to a long-term infill strategy instead of the outward and onward attitude that pervades through much of the fringe areas in Reno and almost all of Sparks. As to the use of parking garages for anything but parking - I think it's a daring and potentially misguided change that may never happen. It's not a bad thing to have dedicated parking downtown, even if it's in prime real estate areas. I'd also be against the re-development of the Five Star Saloon - it's definitely in need of some work, but its role in the gay community of Reno should not be ignored in favor of more generic shops. I would also be generally opposed to the City of Reno backing just ONE revitalization project at the scope being described - if the market doesn't survive as long as is hoped (perish the thought - seriously) it would be tough to encourage development without reliable and viable anchors in place. Again, I'm not looking for a fight, just trying to explain my comments a bit further.

Posted by: RenoSteve - 5/21/2008 3:39:47 AM
Mark W, I think we are more or less on the same page. I simply feel that buildings in the West Street Market area - like much of downtown - need facelifts and rehabilitation more than they need to be replaced or have additional floors added. The city has a pilot facade improvement program scheduled for the west side of Virginia between 2nd and the alley south of Fitzgeralds. I hope the resulting visual transformation sparks interest in similar storefront renovations on neighboring blocks. Similarly, I think a primary benefit of the West Street Market (in addition to the new businesses it will bring downtown) is the facelift and revitalization to those 1920's era brick structures - and I hope that similar facelifts will begin to happen to neighboring West Street buildings and that a vibrant market district of sorts begins to emerge.