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Report Looks At Business Vacancy Crisis In Santa Barbara

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An oversupply of space, and above market rental rates are some of the concerns identified in a new report about the surge in business vacancies in downtown Santa Barbara. A new report commissioned by the City of Santa Barbara identifies a number of issues.

The report contends the city doesn’t have a business friendly reputation, and that the permitting process for new businesses is expensive. And, it says vagrants are hurting the image of State Street.

Recommendations include changing the zoning and permitting process to make it more flexible, and business friendly. The report calls identifying specialty retail categories which might be a good fit in the area, and creating streamlined permits for popup events.

It also suggests that the city should encourage UC Santa Barbara to open a satellite campus downtown.

Lance Orozco has been News Director of KCLU since 2001, providing award-winning coverage of some of the biggest news events in the region, including the Thomas and Woolsey brush fires, the deadly Montecito debris flow, the Borderline Bar and Grill attack, and Ronald Reagan's funeral. 
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