20 thoughts on “Fill in The Bubble (7/8/10)

  • July 8, 2010 at 10:53 am
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    Kuby’s and Peggy Sue’s!
    What is the story on the new DIVE restaurant?

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  • July 8, 2010 at 12:13 pm
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    Someone has to say it: Restaurants are what’s killing Snider Plaza. When I was a kid there was Kuby’s and Peggy’s. Burger house was there, but with no enclosed seating. At some point, Amore and Cisco Grill showed up. Then Ball’s. Okay, fine.

    Nowadays, add in Bandito’s, Half Shells, Penne Pomodoro, Zoe’s Kitchen, Food From Galilee, Jiang’s, and probably a couple others I’m not thinking of. And we wonder why parking is a problem.

    Snider Plaza was designed for shops, not restaurants. Shops like a paint store, a hardware store, M.E. Moses, a drug store, or a barber shop–that os to say, the sort of shop where where you’d go in, get what you needed, and the LEAVE. Whereas at restaurants, people park their cars and leave them there for an hour or two.

    There has to be a ceiling on the number of restaurants, and how closely they’re packed together, or Snider Plaza will simply never function properly again.

    Yes, I realize the rents are so absurdly high that restaurants are one of the only feasible options these days. Which means that in order to save Snider Plaza, long term, the property owners are going to have to come to grips with the fact that they’re pricing themselves to death–strangling the goose that lays the golden eggs.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 1:05 pm
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    @A

    Parking is a huge problem at Snider Plaza, but it’s a free market economy. When enough people get tired of trying to find a parking spot, they will go else where to eat and several of the Snider Plaza restaurants will close. New restaurants will not want to locate where they can’t survive due to parking isssues, and some other business that requires less parking will. It won’t happen over night, but it will happen due to the laws of supply and demand. However, my guess is that while most people don’t like the parking situation, it’s not enough to deter them from visiting the restaurants.

    Getting government involved to tell us what we want and need is usually not a good idea.

    On a side note, Snider Plaza was built before the big box category killers and before Northpark Mall came along. Feel free to open a paint store, hardware store, drug store, etc in Sinder Plaza, but I’m guessing you won’t be able to compete with Home Depot, Walgreens, Target and so on. So, something has to fill those spaces and there is a demand for restaurants right now.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 2:16 pm
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    Starbucks, Kuby’s, CDLC, Zoe’s, Bubba’a, Penne…oh no…those are all food establishments. (Sorry A) Wait – I do love Turner Dry Cleaning and the new medical clinic…do those count? (Hi, Dr. Farley!!) Shops are quirky and fun to browse but not my mainstream for shopping. We walk – but I know it is huge problem for others.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 2:49 pm
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    The restaurants, we like to spend our dining dollars locally in neighborhood establishments that aren’t chains.

    We also would miss Baby Bliss, The Nest, Peek in the Attic, Flavors from Afar, Learning Express, CVS, Plaza Health Foods – the list goes on and on.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 2:53 pm
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    The restaurants, and Tom Thumb. I agree wholeheartedly with wcm about the supply and demand of parking. Frankly, I have no idea how some businesses with terrible parking stay in business. But if a restaurant, title company, clothes store, toy store, etc. have such bad parking, they had better be extra special or eventually they will fail.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 3:04 pm
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    Mom and Pop. @ A- My Grandmother was complaining about parking in front of the health food store back in 1949 when there were no restaurants here. The problem is, Snider Plaza was not “designed” at all. Mr. Snider sold the lots off to individual people who developed buildings piecemeal and neither he, the property owners or the young City of UP ever thought or were required to plan for the future by adding parking lots. Over the years, certain property owners tried to buy up properties to the west for parking but they were denied a change of zoning by the city, (Karl Kuby tried for years). To make matters worse, the parking ratio of 1 space to every 300 sqft regardless of business use either was not or could not be enforced and businesses with high parking requirements like restaurants, hair salons and nail salons were given occupancy permits even though they couldn’t even satisfy those lax parking requirements. Two years ago we finally made parking ratios tighter and started enforcing them, which means no more additional restaurants or salons, (unless they can satisfy the tighter requirements), so we stopped the bleeding so to speak. Too many restaurants is really a symptom of the real problem which is a lack of oversight. You are right though that property owners can help the situation tremendously by renting judiciously. Buddy Porter threw out the porno theater even though they had a hundred year lease. I’d call that stewardship. Sorry for the epic post…..

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  • July 8, 2010 at 3:06 pm
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    @A – I disagree. I go to Snider Plaza mainly for the restaurants, I’ll stop in to the shops sometimes while I’m there to eat. There is still a hair salon and a drug store, a florist, ME Moses doesn’t exist anymore, we only go to big hardware stores that will be able to serve every single hardware need we have in one shot, there’s 2 paint stores up the road on Lovers Lane – so I don’t understand your beef with the restaurants. And you left off the Hall family restaurants – Cisco, Amore and Peggy Sue. The owners of these restaurants are huge supporters of the community, Peggy Sue gives the BBQ to the HS band for BBQ with the band night, Amore for the Belle’s spagetti dinner, just to name a couple of biggies. Restaurants aren’t the enemy of Snider Plaza, they are the lifeblood

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  • July 8, 2010 at 3:13 pm
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    @ wcm The free market running amuck is how things got so messed up here. What we needed over the years in SP was more oversight, not less.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 3:22 pm
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    We walk to Banditos or Half-Shells about 3x a week, but the stores do nothing for me. My wife gets her nails done at Nail Star but that’s probably the only non-food establishment we frequent.

    As for Dive, the menu looks tasty, but a tad pricey for a to-go concept. Nice as PC may be, the restaurants are all very moderately priced (Cafe Pacific aside, but that’s a different echelon). Dive is just that, a dive…yet they want $7 for a beer? (though it looks like they’ve removed alcohol from their online menu, beer was $7 when it was up).

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  • July 8, 2010 at 5:44 pm
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    Short Stop, Ivy House, Peek in the Attic

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  • July 8, 2010 at 6:20 pm
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    @Max, so are there still multiple properties owners for multiple zero-lot parcels? We know how it works at HP Village. But how does property ownership work at Snider Plaza? If they are multiple private property, then why do UP citizens pay for extra parking-police? Thanks.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 7:42 pm
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    Creme! There my be a lot of restaurants, but that is one store that better stay because i have an addiction to whoopie pies right now. I ate them in Maine several years ago but never knew anyone that had them here. Now they seem to be popping up and the ones here are the best.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 8:17 pm
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    I miss the Fine Arts theater. What is an upscale neighborhood without a porn theater that occasionally shows foreign and art films? Think of the Magnolia or Angelika with a twist.

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  • July 8, 2010 at 8:32 pm
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    Max, I really hate to bring this up ’cause I got beat up over it last time…but couldn’t the Unicard and restrictions on retail beer and wine sales be considered “oversight”. And wasn’t free markets one of the reasons given by the many people who chimed in on this blog a few months ago during your petition drive to nix the Unicard and restrictions on retail beer and wine sales? With the large concentration of restaurants in SP plus a Tom Thumb it would seem that your ballot initiative in November is contrary to the less free market and more oversight idea you just expoused for Snider Plaza.

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  • July 9, 2010 at 8:01 am
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    We totally go there for Banditos and Half Shells. Love those restaurants. And Tom Thumb and CVS and the quaint post office.

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  • July 9, 2010 at 12:51 pm
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    Adams Mobil, Skillerns, Ralph’s, M.E. Moses

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  • July 9, 2010 at 2:26 pm
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    The loss of Steve’s Ice Cream still burns my soul.

    M.E. Moses was awesome because the old ladies working there would sell you a BB gun, BBs or slingshots without batting an eye.

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  • July 9, 2010 at 6:31 pm
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    @James Tucker – At the risk of putting words in his mouth, I don’t think Max Fuqua’s espousing oversight for oversight’s sake. Some oversight’s good, like the kind that results in more and better parking. Some is bad, like fatuous rules that add to vendors’ and customers’ costs of alcoholic beverages. Even assuming that a dry precinct is beneficial (which I don’t), the wet/dry laws don’t really keep an area dry, so what benefit justifies the cost of the private-club charade?

    P.S. Peggy Sue, J.D.’s Chippery, Kuby’s, Penne Pomodoro (hmmm — all restaurants, of a sort.)

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