Carpinteria’s renaissance continues with the exciting project coming into focus at 700 Linden Avenue, where the full block formed by Linden, 7th and 8th streets, and Cactus Lane is being turned into a multi-tenant hive of restaurants, shops, and services. The project is completely permitted; groundbreaking will occur this fall (after the Avocado Festival), and if all goes well, it’ll open a year later.
Developers Terry Huggins and Matt LaBrie of Santa Barbara appear to have engineered the plans to avoid the controversy dogging other projects. First, it’s not a hotel, so it’s aimed at locals as much as visitors. Second, it’s an adaptive reuse (by DMHA) of all four buildings, turning them into something new rather than tearing them down and starting fresh. Third, they’ve engaged Amy Cooper—whose Plum Goods shop is still missed—to curate the tenants, which will be limited to local and regional independent operators. More on who’s already on board after we check out the floor plans….
So who has signed on? Old Town Coffee is taking the corner space for its third outpost; the hardest-working restaurateur in town, Ramón Velazquez (Corazón Cocina and many forthcoming projects), has nabbed one of the other spots; and Summerland Salon & Spa has chosen the complex for its second location. Upstairs, meanwhile, Alvaro Rojas (Milk & Honey, Alcazar) and Nadia Ajlouni (The Blue Owl) are partnering on a rooftop bar with ocean views. And Cooper is still on the hunt for “anyone with a good business plan,” adding that she’s especially keen to bring in yoga, Pilates, or other fitness studio. (She can be reached at ([email protected].)
“We really want to make it a part of the community, to create a place for Carp to gather,” she says. To that end, there’s a large central plaza that will function as an outdoor living room with music, art, and other events.
Here’s a video rendering that offers the best sense of the place, inside and out, and a bunch of stills if you’re not in the mood for video.
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