The popular Santa Barbara Night Market has been called off in a conflict over an ice skating rink plan, structural plans and a lease.
The organizer, Glen Broomberg , says he wanted to make the site in the vacant Macy’s building downtown bigger than last year with up to 300 vendors.
He also planned for a second story ice rink and had negotiated with a company that specializes in the rinks.
With the latest developments, and a still uncompleted deal, Broomberg said, ” I had to make a call. There were too many moving parts. ”
The Paseo Nuevo is owned by Pacific Retailers. Spokeswoman Mary Lynn Harms-Romo says it did not have what it needed to go through with the agreement.
” Unfortunately, the Night Market owner’s timeline was not in compliance with a feasible and executable plan for the 2019 holiday season, ” she said.
The mall said it had not reviewed the structural report for the ice rink
The first discussion of a larger shopping experience including a three-story marketplace was said to be highly anticipated by the downtown business community when it was announced months ago.
” It’s all done by the book. An engineering firm comes in and says to the city, ‘this is great.’ That’s exactly what happened and even before the Paseo had that they called us into meetings and said, ‘we don’t want the ice rink.’ This was seven months after we had meetings with engineering firms and ice companies, ” said Broomberg .
It is now less than two months to go for the late November opening.
” As of late September, we did not have a formal proposal, permitting updates, or complete structural engineering information in order to negotiate a lease, ” said Harms-Romo .
Vendors have been told of the Night Market demise and have been offered their rental fees back. But some invested already in products, time and other sales plans.
They are scrambling to find a place to sell. No alternatives have been suggested by Broomberg or the others at this point.
Broomberg was given the Downtown Organization Entrepreneur of the Year honor in February for his creative market last year. The breakfast event was sponsored in part by Paseo Nuevo.
The city says it is disappointed the market is not going to happen and it was a success last year. There were an estimated 250,000 people that walked through the doors.
In addition to the 2018 market vendors, there were areas for live music, small restaurants, wine and beer.
Broomberg says the city has been supportive.
” Paul Casey (City Administrator) and the administrative team, every single one of them has been so supportive of this. The Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Organization, it has been amazing experience to have so many people on our side to do this with me, ” Broomberg said.
Paseo Nuevo provided us the following statement:
We were disappointed when we received word from Night Market owner, Glen Broomberg , that he was not moving forward with Paseo Nuevo this holiday season. We worked in partnership with the Night Market owner in hopes of another successful experience for the community and Night Market vendors alike. Unfortunately, without a lease in place, we could not execute plans in a timely fashion.
The Paseo Nuevo management and leasing teams always work closely with potential tenants during the exploratory phase of a project. We offer access to properties to get specifications on any potential buildouts , just as we did with the Night Market team. However, as is standard in our industry, we require a formal proposal and lease. When major construction is a part of a potential lessee’s plan we always direct them to the City first to comply with all permitting requirements. As of late September, we did not have a formal proposal, permitting updates, or complete structural engineering information in order to negotiate a lease.
In the case of the Night Market, we learned about plans to include an ice rink along with the rest of the community. While an exciting prospect, the structural requirements needed to provide a safe experience still remain an unknown. Paseo Nuevo will continue to make efforts to support all potential vendors and identify unique experiences that benefit the community. Unfortunately, the Night Market owner’s timeline was not in compliance with a feasible and executable plan for the 2019 holiday season.