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Big retailers leave SCV

Weak performance cited for closing of local Brookstone, Abercrombie & Fitch

Posted: January 29, 2014 2:00 a.m.
Updated: January 29, 2014 2:00 a.m.

Workers inside the Brookstone store on Town Center Drive in Valencia pack up merchandise on Tuesday. Jana Adkins/The Signal

 

Three national retailers have closed their doors at the mall in Santa Clarita.

Both Brookstone and Abercrombie & Fitch on Town Center Drive at the Westfield Valencia Town Center mall are officially out of business in the local market area.

Brookstone closed its Valencia store based on weaker performance, said a spokesperson for the chain. It continues to operate some 250 other retail stores in shopping malls and airports, said a public relations manager.

Inside the store on Tuesday, workers were dismantling the store displays and shelving for removal.

Likewise, a spokesperson for Abercrombie & Fitch gave the same reason for closing.

“A part of our company’s long-term strategy is to close underperforming stores. As a result of this, the Abercrombie & Fitch location in Valencia is closing.”

The youth retailer’s doors were already closed, windows sealed off and the sign had come down off the building by Tuesday.

Another retailer on the street said the $10 or Less Bookstore, which just opened last fall, is moving into the space vacated by Brookstone. The retailer also reported that Lane Bryant will be leasing the bookstore’s current space.

Inside the mall, two other retailers have closed for business, one being the Guess store. Also, Seattle-based retailer Ben Bridge Jeweler closed its doors on Dec. 31.

In a letter to its customers, the retailer said it was “consolidating all store repairs, layaways and special orders” at its Northridge store and sent customers a $25 gift certificate to use at the new location.

Meanwhile shoppers inside the mall are noticing other changes taking place down by the Sears store.

Calling 2014 “the year of change,” a spokesperson for the shopping center said it is in the process of making some significant changes to the center.

Some of the stores that appear to be closing are only relocating, and Westfield is bringing new retailers to the Town Center Drive, inside the mall and to The Patios.

Westfield said it is working on attracting retailers that customers consider to be “relevant” and have been asking for, but that not all of the changes or new additions can be announced yet.

“We are excited to open new and anticipated retailers in 2014,” said Stacie House with the Westfield Valencia Town Center.

“We look forward to several great additions to Westfield Valencia Town Center this year,” she said.

jana@signalscv.com
661-287-5599

Comments

Carlitos: Posted: January 29, 2014 4:46 a.m.

Those stores must be relocating to the Newhall Arts District Grannies economic enrichment roundabout zone for the back-in parking at the Library building! --edited.


Jackk: Posted: January 29, 2014 6:13 a.m.

Overpriced stores be gone!


ricketzz: Posted: January 29, 2014 7:07 a.m.

Brick and mortar stores are so quaint...but they can't compete with the web, even when state taxes are paid. I suspect hi-end (nosebleed) stores, and stores for dirt poor people will survive. Hopefully the mall will go away some day. It isn't much, architecturally, and the echo is fierce.


OldReliable: Posted: January 29, 2014 7:34 a.m.

I like the Mall... don't go there all that often but I'm glad it's there.


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 8:16 a.m.

I don't know how they survived as long as they did, quite frankly. The rents in town center are exorbitant, and when you combine that with utilities, liability insurance and staffing, the amount of sales needed to offset the overhead can't possibly be met. Valencia just isn't the draw that people here said/thought/hoped it would be. People can shop Abercrombie, Brookstone, etc. in LA and be much closer to other attractions. They're certainly not going to drive up here to shop, and Valencia just is not a vacation destination for out-of-towners.

PS: Carlitos - LMAO.


michael: Posted: January 29, 2014 8:22 a.m.

Well the Acura King and is taxpayer funded Santa Clarita Valley Economic Development Corporation could not stop business from leaving. All the colored glossy photos, did zilch!


bbcalvin: Posted: January 29, 2014 8:33 a.m.

I'm not surprised about Brookstone and A&F. The mall is too fragmented now with the inside mall, Patios, and Town Center. Its not conducive to walking around. Just take a look at Town Center, hardly any brand stores left. The inside mall too has a lot of filler stores. Seems all the major retailers are migrating to the Patios section.


LosRubios: Posted: January 29, 2014 8:45 a.m.

There's a mall in Valencia???


Unreal: Posted: January 29, 2014 9:01 a.m.

I went to Brookstone to look for Christmas gifts an could not find any cool items that hit my price range. NO big loss. I liked Sharper Image better.

So are we finally getting a Cheesecake Factory? I know lots of people had been asking for this. Not my favorite either but I would go there.


Unreal: Posted: January 29, 2014 9:02 a.m.

What about the Bouquet Cyn. space left by OSH. Anything new on that?
Please, please, don't let it be a dollar store.


scvforall: Posted: January 29, 2014 9:22 a.m.

There seems to be a psychological barrier to exiting the mall by the food court to shop Town Center Drive. Doesn't seem like part of the mall. The Patios don't really either, but they have multiple entrances into the mall so it's a little different.

The stores on Golden Mall in Burbank have the same issues. Either you go to the Burbank Mall or to San Fernando Road, not both.


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 9:23 a.m.

I think there needs to be a moratorium on dollar stores. We're already saturated with them.


SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:05 a.m.

Unreal,

I have a "small" update about the OSH site and soon to be vacant Office Max. Yes, some of the "dollar" stores, such as Dollar Tree and Family Dollar are kicking the tires, but they want a deal and the Santa Monica-based owner isn't offering a "sale" on leases in his center on Bouquet.

On the other hand, Slut hears some of the furniture chains are having a look and the possibility exists that a furniture store may take the OSH space. I've heard San Diego-based MOR Furniture has been looking around. Nearest MOR stores are in Bakersfield and Fresno. Other than one location in Rancho Cucamongs, MOR has no other retail presence in the Los Angeles area.

Another San Diego-based furniture chain, Jerome's has looked around town, but their interest has been more look than anything else at this point. Jerome's does have stores in the Inland Empire, and a recent opening in Torrance.

As a furniture store, the square footage of OSH would be on the small side for MOR, but might very well fit Jerome's.

Walmart has been looking at the OSH site for a Neighborhood Market, but until I see plans hit city hall, Slut believes that Walmart will not be opening in that center.

Keep this in mind, Santa Clarita has very few "boxes" available that are over 50,000 square feet or more in size. Yes, lot's of little spaces, but not enough to make a large "box" at one location. Another large box that can be used as retail is the former Spectrum Club which is a tad over 50,000 square feet. For use as a retail site (or any other use other than what was a health club), the former Spectrum Club will require considerable renovation.

SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:08 a.m.

Didn't realize Office Max was leaving. Ugh.


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:11 a.m.

Dollar stores, 99 cent stores are the only stores that fit the business clientele in SCV thanks to the planning department. The residents will not see a Cheesecake factory, nor a PF changes. Santa Clarita doe not fit their business model of cities to build such restaurants.


bartman: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:13 a.m.

Seems like our economic development group is doing a fine job. Business closures in both the small and large box stores. Build more houses and let the commuters take their disposable income out of the valley.


SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:13 a.m.

Unreal,

Why a "moratorium" on dollar-type stores? Counting just the chains, Dollar Tree has 4 locations and 99c Only Stores has 2 locations. Are you adding the smaller Mom and Pop dollar-type stores in your analysis that Santa Clarita has too many dollar-type stores.

Other than the non-taxable grocery items, all of the non food items sold at these stores provide sales tax revenue for the city (Dollar Tree location in Castaic goes to the County of Los Angeles).

Why/how are dollar-type stores a problem? Have you noticed that many stores have a dollar-type offering in their stores. Look at Target's right at the front of the store. Lot's of items are selling for a dollar on those shelves.

Does this make Target a bad retailer?

SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT


SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:21 a.m.

NotSoAwesomeTown,

Office Max leaving the Bouquet center has to do with the merger of Office Depot and Office Max, and the consolidation/rationalization of their retail store base.

Same as what is occuring at the Town Center. Happens all the time, usually in early January or before the retailer closes it's fiscal year, which for many is the last week of January/first week of February. It's better for the business to write down the underperforming stores during the current fiscal year, and expense any remaining lease obligations under discontinued operations.

By the way, has J C Penney ever finished/completed the long overdue renovations to it's second floor at the Town Center? That has been a mess for at least a year.

SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT


LStaedtler: Posted: January 29, 2014 11:47 a.m.

Someone at the center said they are expanding the former OSH store into the former garden center to approx. 55,000 square feet and they are dividing the building into two stores about 33,000 and 22,000 square feet. Don't know what this means for what type of stores would fit there.


Tallahto: Posted: January 29, 2014 12:00 p.m.

I wish someone would open a Sonic drive-in franchise here in SC. Love those tater tots!


SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT: Posted: January 29, 2014 12:22 p.m.

Not a "fashionista" here, but having a quick chat with a few local business owners who operate retail stores that teens/young adults patronize, it appears that with the young men, at least in the Santa Clarita Valley, very few are wearing A&F in significant numbers.

What appears to be popular/trending is the "Diamond" brand/line of clothing, hats/accessories, followed by American Eagle, followed by a clothing line called "Obey", and runner ups are Vans, RVCA and Hurley.

One local business owner tells me that the Diamond-line leans more to the Hispanic and Afircan American market segment, while American Eagle has broader appeal across many segments of the late teen/young adult market.
Levi's has strong market share of the denim market, followed by American Eagle.

He followed that up by saying that it's not the teens/young adults that are wearing A&F, but older young adults, into their 30's. That make sense, as when the 30+ age group was younger, A&F was the hot brand.

It seems that among teens/young adults in the Santa Clarita Valley, A&F has but become a distant memory?

Thoughts?

SO_CAL_RETAIL_SLUT


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 12:25 p.m.

This is getting to the point when the City gets desperate for the tax revenue and owners want their lease revenue. I can see a babys r us in the works or something similar for the old OSH site


timothymyers02: Posted: January 29, 2014 12:34 p.m.

Is there an Indian Casino in Santa Clarita's future?


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 12:47 p.m.

Dollar offerings doesn't make Target a bad retailer. Dollar offerings are great, but only if there are better, higher quality offerings elsewhere in the store. The dollar stores in general sell off-brand products which aren't bad for people on a budget, but they also sell a lot of junk.

More important, however, is Santa Clarita's "brand", and the City needs to pay attention to this. You're selling homes in Awesometown at a premium, touting this City like it's the Beverly Hills of North Los Angeles. So we're going to be a town of high-end homes surrounded by low-end retailers? I don't know anyone who's going to want to pay $600k for a house that has a dollar store down the street. Someone at City Hall needs to wake up and realize that what's happening to other towns in the US is happening here, and we risk losing our City's character (what little there is). It's pretty sad to drive through areas of town seeing vacant stores, dollar stores, and thrift shops. Doesn't really speak well for the neighborhood.

And let me just clarify - I'm not against dollar stores. I'm against TOO MANY dollar stores. Just like I'm against too many Walmarts, or too many of anything else. Balance. That's all I'm saying.


Unreal: Posted: January 29, 2014 1:02 p.m.


I was not the one who mentioned a moratorium on dollar stores but would not mind one. A lot of Dollar stores, Quick cash stores, Tattoo Parlors, Massage Parlors all say the same thing to me. Not what I want to see in this town.

With a Petco, Trader Joes, Best Buy all in one shopping center we should be able to do better than another dollar tree. As slut said there are already at least 6 and more if you count the smaller types. Way enough.


cj64: Posted: January 29, 2014 1:25 p.m.

NotSoAwesomeTown, I totally agree with you. The "branding" of the city is very important. What the City offers to its residents is affected by policy.
The recent approval of the ugly huge electronic billboards by the planning commision sets a BAD image of the city to those who visit and live here.

Last year Walmart wanted a Neighborhood Market in the mall, and the City was so gungho on the project, they spent alot of time and effort before they got the publics negative feedback.

The big landowners control rents, and they are outrageous and astronomical. The landowners also want a percentage of sales.
As was said, most business in the Mall fail because the overhead is way too high. The big stores, Macys, Sears and JCPennys have long leases at a much lower rate.

Beef OBradys closed because their rent was huge. El Torito and Red Lobster had long term sweetheart deals , and their rent was 1/10 of Beef OBradys.

Unless the rent situation is somehow fixed, you will never get places like PF Changs, Cheesecake Factory, Yardhouse etc, or any other restaurant that people want. Yardhouse is very good, but you have to go to Palmdale.


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 1:27 p.m.

High end homes? Where? To even mention Beverly hills in comparison is a joke.
Remember, SCV is on your way to such cities as Palmdale and Lancaster.
That should put things in perspective a bit.


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 1:38 p.m.

CMS - I'm not making the comparison....it's the way they market this City as "high-end" - and god forbid you mention Palmdale/Lancaster in the same breath as Santa Clarita. They've tried very hard to "rise above" the other desert communities (hence the Awesometown), and whether or not that's worked is really subjective and a matter of personal opinion. But they've thrown a lot of time and taxpayer dollars at developing a brand for this City - good or bad - and it's going to go down the proverbial toilet if they don't get some control over retail expansion.


NotSoAwesomeTown: Posted: January 29, 2014 1:42 p.m.

PS High end homes are everywhere in this valley. Feel free to browse Realtor.com. Homes for sale in SCV start at $25M. http://www.realtor.com/realestateandhomes-search/Santa-Clarita_CA


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 2:09 p.m.

NSAT- Understood. But remember there are also a few low end homes in Beverly Hills also and Beautiful high end gated communities in Palmdale and Lancaster along with 25 million dollar lots too. Im sure you can find a million dollar home in South L.A. Every neighborhood has them.


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 2:35 p.m.

The real kicker is that everybody knows where Beverly Hills, Palmdale, Lancaster and South L.A. is.


Unreal: Posted: January 29, 2014 2:38 p.m.

We don't compare with either Beverly Hills or Palmdale. We are way better than the Valley. Best comparison is Simi Valley.

Why not just throw up some rent by the hour motels to go with all the dollar stores.


timothymyers02: Posted: January 29, 2014 3:08 p.m.

I wonder how many of the folks in this comment section agitating for a City moratorium on low end retailers and somehow "fixing" the rents charged by private landowners are Tea Party Patriots who think the government is too large and need to stay out of people's personal business.


SCVdaPlaceToBe: Posted: January 29, 2014 3:23 p.m.

Face it, SCV is not a place for the higher end retailer or restaurant. Families and kids rule so those are the type of retailers and restaurants that will make out. The area simply isn't diverse enough...the house, the family (2 or 3 kids), 2 cars (1 truck or SUV of course) and there's not much $$$ left. Even chain restaurants are livelier elsewhere. The Wokano in Santa Monica has late night music. In our mall that was "too much". More CHUCK E CHEESE please! --edited.


LStaedtler: Posted: January 29, 2014 3:26 p.m.

I think a lot of people on here do not realize that the City can not dictate what type of stores go into a space if its zoned retail/commercial. The City can not unilaterally say we only want a Babies R Us versus a Dollar Store or similarly a Vallarta versus a Vons in a certain location. That would open the City up to lawsuits.

You many not like the type of stores that are going in but that is what the private sector believes will be successful based on their market research studies. The City itself may not like the dollar stores but if it meets zoning, there is little that can be done. City is not in control of what retail stores go in. That is private sector.

With this being a Republican area, I am quite surprised with the all of the people asking the City to get involved in trying to regulate private business. Maybe people out here just call themselves Republicans without knowing the fundamentals of the party.


cms96a: Posted: January 29, 2014 3:28 p.m.

The City has no direction of what it wants to be at this point in time.
Sort of like Downtown Newhall. They cant go any higher end and yet they cant go any lower end. That's why you are experiencing useless development.
Excess car washes, excess Walmarts, just fill up the space and collect the taxes before going broke.


michael: Posted: January 29, 2014 3:41 p.m.

To suggest that the city does not regulate business is a bogus claim. After all, who writes the zoning regulations. By the way, how was the Walmart grocery idea for the mall area dumped.


timothymyers02: Posted: January 29, 2014 4:29 p.m.

LStaedtler:

Flinty Republicans are distrustful of the "gubmint" unless they feel they are somehow turning the screws themselves. Show me that most dictatorial by the book member of an HOA board and I will show you a Tea Party Patriot!


LStaedtler: Posted: January 29, 2014 4:56 p.m.

michael- Here's a Signal article relating to the Walmart http://www.signalscv.com/archives/86357/.

City said grocery store was an allowed use based on the zoning. However, Walmart didn't want to comply with some conditions regarding to architecture and loading bay location.


michael: Posted: January 29, 2014 5:18 p.m.

There is more than one way to skin a cat Staedtler. I am aware of the article. Again, to suggest the city does not regulate business is bogus.


timothymyers02: Posted: January 29, 2014 5:32 p.m.

michael:

The point that LStaedtler is making is that ALL of the elected officials currently serving in the City government would say if asked that they are small government business friendly Repubs, when the regulation of property usage in the City is in reality fairly draconic.


SenseInCastaic2: Posted: January 29, 2014 5:35 p.m.

I am not sad to see Abercrombie and Fitch go out... amidst their scandal last year I hope they never sell another item!


michael: Posted: January 29, 2014 5:39 p.m.

Thanks Junior! I think my point is clear even to a Dem.


LStaedtler: Posted: January 29, 2014 7:53 p.m.

Yes, michael the City regulates business through zoning. One of my points is if piece of land is zoned community commercial and a grocery store is an allowed use in that zone, the City can not deny a Vallarta coming in because they prefer/want a Bristol Farms instead. However, if a project comes in that requires a conditional use permit or a variance, then the City has more latitude/discretion in allowing/denying a business come in.


Carlitos: Posted: January 29, 2014 7:55 p.m.

Everything at Sonic drive-in is frozen, then fried. I stopped at one in Bakersfield and left without eating. So bad it makes Del Taco look very healthy!


cj64: Posted: January 29, 2014 8:54 p.m.

The reason why Walmart was dropped was there was a very big negative public opinion of putting a Walmart in the mall. The mall owners decided not to pursue it anymore even though the city put alot of effort into it.

If the mall is zoned for a grocery store, and Vallarta is a grocery store, there is no way in hell that there will ever be a Vallarta grocery store in the mall, even if all the conditions are met! As much as LStaedtler says the city cant stop it, it will never get approved. The city will just change the zoning requirements.That is what is happening with the ugly huge electronic billboards planned for along the freeway. Although the electronic billboards are illegal and violate city ordinances, the city council will change the ordinances to approve the ugly billboards. That is what they want. --edited.


ElizaS: Posted: January 30, 2014 11:53 p.m.

Not true cj64. City is required to process every application that is submitted. In case of Walmart grocery store, city recommended denial. Mall owner decided not to pursue it knowing it would be an uphill battle with city in meeting conditions and with little public support.

You need to study up. City can't just change zoning on property owners. It must be requested by the property owner for a zone change or if a use is not compatible with zoning the owner can ask for a zoning variance.


ricketzz: Posted: January 30, 2014 6:02 a.m.

WalMart groceries are rated last. They do a terrible job. You want Stater Bros for food, not WalMart. WalMart tells their employees to go on food stamps, stop asking company for raise.


cj64: Posted: January 30, 2014 6:38 a.m.

Elizas, what you say is only half true. The city only objected after the publics reaction.

http://www.signalscv.com/archives/86357/

“The first staff report recommended approval of the Development Review Permit with certain considerations of approval; this was consistent with our conversations with city staff over the past eight months,” the letter reads. “However, the second version of the staff report changed course and recommended denial.”


And this states the City's initial approval of the Walmart.

http://www.signalscv.com/archives/84373/

“Westfield wants to move forward with the Walmart grocery again,” said Jason Crawford, manager of economic development and marketing.....
There are concerns about parking, traffic circulation and pedestrian access, Crawford said. And the city received a couple of letters of opposition since the last public hearing was delayed.....
The Walmart Neighborhood Market is already permitted, said Jeff Hogan, city planning manager, but Westfield is going before the planning commission because of the redesign changes it is requesting.....
Santa Clarita is asking Westfield to install a “vermaport” to provide shoppers with better access to the lower level parking lot by Sears, said Jessica Frank, associate planner for the city.
A vermaport is a side-by-side, dual escalator. One side moves people and the other side transports their shopping carts, she said.
With a vermaport there will be better parking lot and pedestrian access for people, Frank said. People also need a convenient way to take their groceries to their car. “We want to make sure moms with kids can get to their car in a safe way,” she said

There was much supporting effort from city employees: Jason Crawford, manager of economic development and marketing, Jeff Hogan, city planning manager, and Jessica Frank, associate planner for the city.

After the initial city approval, when the public found out about the proposal for Walmart, there was HUGE PUBLIC OUTRAGE, and the public did not want nor would support a Walmart in the mall.
People really also felt insulted with the citys reference to vermin for the "people carrier".


cj64: Posted: January 30, 2014 6:42 a.m.

This issue hilights the major problem with the city.
The city does not want nor takes the publics opinion into account on any city project. The publics negative reaction to the Walmart in the mall was the deciding factor in why it did not go through.


stray: Posted: January 30, 2014 7:33 a.m.

@cj - "The city does not want nor takes the publics opinion into account on any city project"

Not necessarily true in every instance. The public's opinion back in 2008 had a major impact on a proposed project for the recycling facility slated for the area just north of Placerita Cyn. Verify it with the city meeting that happened back on March 11, 2008. The community flooded the city hall with residents from all over that complained and were adamantly opposed to this project. One of our regular Signal posters named Alan Ferdman was very instrumental with his relentless help to oppose that project. Alan Ferdman is the Canyon Country Advisory Committee Chairman. He truly cares about the community and takes public opinions seriously. He'll get my vote for city council this next election!


cms96a: Posted: January 30, 2014 8:37 a.m.

Walmart is synonomous for lower class level. Granted we all shop there It is not something to brag about that your city has 3 of them.


cj64: Posted: January 30, 2014 8:39 a.m.

stray, I believe Mr Ferdman is one of the good choices for city council.

More on the citys actions and ignoring public opinion.

1. Privatization of Library and construction of Newhall library. Many people objected and attended city council meetings. City aproved the measure. Mayor Ender voted out of office.

2. Backin parking in Newhall, and single lane on Decoro. This was passed by City council, but after very strong negative public opinion these were redone. It would have been easier to ask the public what they want in the first place.

3. Newhall roundabout, worm and bug zapper art project, and landscaping.
People do not want an unnecessary roundabout. People do not want a worm, bug zapper or any other wasteful art project. The city finally asked the public what they wanted, and the majority choice was do nothing. Instead, the city choose what less than 10% of the public wanted. landscaping.

4. Electronic Billboards. the city put up a web site billboards.santa-clarita.com. Nearly 90% of the respondents do not want the ugly huge electronic billboards. Guess what the city planning commission does? They approve the electronic billboards even though over 90% of the responses do not want them.

The city is just like a business. If the customers (public) do not like the way they are treated, they will vote new people who represent them and listen to the public. It is unfortunate that the city does not have a handle on what the public wants and only reacts when adamant people have to flood city hall.


Unreal: Posted: January 30, 2014 9:04 a.m.

You can be a Republican and still not want a town full of massage parlors or other low class establishments. You can appeal to the landlords to keep our city the way locals want it. The voters in an area can express their opinion to local city council of new business setting up in their city either positive or negative, and yes zoning requirements are a good thing.

I don't think The Cheesecake Factory is too "high end" for SCV.
It is not exactly Spago’s. --edited.


stray: Posted: January 30, 2014 9:46 a.m.

@cj - "More on the citys actions and ignoring public opinion"

I hear ya. They have pulled some fast ones around here lately. But, on those same issues that you mentioned, did anyone REALLY complain and voice their outrage? That is, did the community flock into the city council meeting and object to each of those proposals BEFORE they were slated to happen? I doubt that very many people got involved - just like on other issues that happen around here. I also doubt that people wrote to the council voicing their opposition to a project. Remember, it took a community's involvement to show support to the Saugus School District's opposition to one of their board members. Actions speak louder than words do. The BoDs voted to remove him because of the public's outrage. Point is - if more people in the community got directly involved, instead of doing nothing but complain to themselves or write a negative comment on the Signal, then things would be different. The council would be compelled to listen to their community's voices and seriously think before they act on something. That won't necessarily be true in every instance, but it would certainly help.

--edited.


cms96a: Posted: January 30, 2014 9:57 a.m.

Looks to me that the city council (like Obama) are just pushing through their own agenda. Perhaps for their own personal gain? By the time they are voted out of office, it's too late to reverse it.


Unreal: Posted: January 30, 2014 10:12 a.m.

The city council may push some of their own agendas but they are also in many cases (as pointed out in many comments above)responsive to public outcry.


valenciajoe: Posted: January 30, 2014 10:54 a.m.

Let's get back to the focus of the article... retailers are closing in the SCV. Too much political stuff going on of late.

First observation - I personally think that Trader Joe's should move into the OSH location. Makes sense just for parking. The traffic that its current location creates is really bad, especially on weekends. The intersection at Newhall and Bouquet is some times blocked by traffic going northbound on Bouquet. I used to like to Best Buy just for the heck of it, but now only go there when I need to (because of the Trader Joe's traffic).

Second - It is sad that retailers are moving out, but don't blame the City, but blame Westfield. They have rather ridiculous rental rates that also include a cut of the location's monthly income. I bet if you asked them, Westfield would rather raze a majority of the stores that were built on Town Center Drive and come up with another plan. The death of those stores is when the Patios were constructed. Stores that were on Town Center were given sweetheart deals to move to the Patios. I heard that it was the intent of Westfield to make Town Center Drive an area for late teen/early 20's shoppers. I guess that never panned out.


ElizaS: Posted: January 30, 2014 11:00 a.m.

cj64- Read again. A grocery store is an allowed use based on the zoning at the mall. This can not be denied. However, Wal-Mart wanted to change some architecture and design of building. The City at first recommended approval with conditions. Again, because grocery store is an allowed use. Wal-Mart did not agree with the conditions or want to implement them. This combined with the public not wanting the store there made mall/Wal-Mart to stop pursing the grocery store.

The City was not "pushing" for Wal-Mart. They were doing what is required by law by evaluating the application. The people from the City you list in your message are not stating support for the project. They are all saying there are challenges with the project and are saying there are conditions they want in place.

City never approved the project as it never made it to Planning Commission. City staff at first recommended approval with conditions. After it was clear the mall/Walmart did not want to implement conditions they changed it to recommendation of denial. THe public not wanting the Walmart was the final straw for the mall/walmart to stop pursing the project.

I understand you dont like the City decisions on certain items but you really are rewriting history with fiction on certain topics.


LStaedtler: Posted: January 30, 2014 11:07 a.m.

Traditional enclosed malls are past their prime. I'm only dreaming but I would like to see the enclosed mall razed and see that area redeveloped into extension of the Patios. The whole mall area is too disjointed right now with Patios, inside mall, and town center drive.


CastaicClay: Posted: January 30, 2014 11:54 a.m.

Retailers are in a race to see how little they can pay someone and then are surprised when nobody can afford to patronize their business? You have to pay people enough to buy what you are selling.


Carlitos: Posted: January 30, 2014 12:00 p.m.

We need more live poultry markets.


Sam2222: Posted: January 30, 2014 2:13 p.m.

When is Kmart closing?


stray: Posted: January 30, 2014 2:46 p.m.

@Sam - "When is Kmart closing?"

Probably right after JCPenney closes - followed by Sears after that.


cj64: Posted: January 30, 2014 3:10 p.m.

ElizaS, you are wrong again. The city would have approved the request, over the public opinion. if Walmart implemented the changes.

The reason why Walmart did not go through was because of the negative public response to the Mall putting a Walmart there. The Mall felt that they would loose alot of customers.

The city planner Jessica Frank came up with the verminator idea, for moms and kids safety. You dont spend that much time and effort for something, "as you say" is just evaluating the proposal. There was alot of money to be made by Walmart and also by the city. The "conditions" asked for by the city would not be a significant financial impact to opening a multimillion dollar store that would provide alot of taxable income to the city.

The next big money making proposal for the city is the huge ugly electronic billboards. Everyone, except those involved in the city and Metro, do not want them. How did they get approved by the City planning commission?
Maybe someone at the city said they can be used for moms and kids safety!


cj64: Posted: January 30, 2014 3:24 p.m.

ElizaS, you act like a city employee.
You totally do not understand what I am saying. The city does whatever it wants, and ignores the public opinion. The city asked "What should be done in the roundabout" the largest answer was "do nothing", less than 10% wanted landscaping. The city council decided to IGNORE what the public wanted, and put landscaping. Only TimBen recommended put noting in, and find out later. He is the only City Council member who is actually listening to and represents the public.

The only way the city responds is like in movies of the middle ages where a group of people with torches is storming the castle. Some here have metioned
an adamantly opposed community flooding city hall. The next step is an angry mob wanting those who do not represent the community be removed from office. This is like what happened in the city of Bell.


lars1: Posted: January 30, 2014 8:31 p.m.

This just in, sorry to hear about the potential closing of the Newhall Ice Company.

The Newhall Ice Company has been in business since 1906 and moved into their current location in the mid 1920s.


ElizaS: Posted: January 30, 2014 8:51 p.m.

cj64- I understand what you're saying. I just don't agree with you on 90% of your arguments. You have your opinion and I have mine. Let's just leave it at that.


scvforall: Posted: January 31, 2014 8:26 a.m.

Sad but true, retail stores come and go based on the shopping habits of the community. We are losing grocery stores, big box retailers and some small local business.

At the same time, we have at least 4 new large space restaurants that have opened in the past 2 weeks, and local bakery Kokolito Cakes just announced a new location opening in Newhall.

As residents, we need to demonstrate our commitment to local retailers if we want them to stay and would like to see additional business in our community.

Our City has changed and it may be that a Vallarta or Super King makes more sense than Ralphs. Prices are better, more ethnic choices, and superior customer service.

We need to speak with our $$$$ and our votes. Complaining on this website does a lot less for new business development than shopping local and demanding higher quality customer service from our business.

Cheesecake Factory, PF Changs, etc., do not want to be known for mediocrity and since we so willingly accept it in the SCV they are staying away.

It is our own fault when business leaves. We are either sending a message that the store doesn't meet our needs, the stuff they sell is junk OR their entitled, or we don't want to give our money to their entitled, rude associates.


Carlitos: Posted: February 1, 2014 11:38 a.m.

The city is secretly making room for a bunch of medical marijuana dispensaries!


cms96a: Posted: February 1, 2014 1:04 p.m.

lol Carlitos! We're going to need them after they're finished with us! lol
Why not just use the empty retail spaces for sound stages. I think the city has put their eggs in one basket relying to much on bringing in more filming for revenue. Maybe rename the city to New Hallywood!


scvforall: Posted: February 2, 2014 10:47 p.m.

I'm more concerned that no one has stopped the e-cigarette and vapor stores from opening. Have you seen the customer base? Young adults about to screw up their lungs. At least under Obamacare they will be able to get care for their lung cancer in a few years.


etanretla: Posted: March 10, 2014 2:50 p.m.

what might work:
h&m
jcrew
nordstrom rack
rei



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