The look of the downtown village area in Carlsbad will soon be changing. A handful of businesses there have been told they must move to make way for new restaurants and shops.
Many of the businesses will be bulldozed to the ground, while others will be remodeled. A high-end retail center will be put there instead.
There are two projects at play: One is the Carlsbad Station project which will eventually take over the area in the early stages.
The other project is the State Street Commons, which will change the facade and interior of the decades-old Antique Mall, according to a preliminary application.
"People have to remember these are the fun little businesses that keep the charm and character of a place going," said Erin McBride, who owns The Shop Beauty and Art Salon.
Other businesses getting the boot to make room for the new development include a yoga studio, jewelry shop, and Mas Fina Cantina, a popular eatery and bar on State Street.
"It's wiping out businesses that have been here 20 or 30 years," said Andy Davis, owner of Mas Fina Cantina. "They say this is what they're going to do and then they do it."
He added he still has a year and a half left on his lease but will try to find a new spot close to the area.
“These proposed projects are in the very early stages," said Kristina Ray, spokesperson for the City of Carlsbad. "Community input is an important part of the city’s planning process.”
Some say the new development carries certain benefits such as more housing and more opportunity for newer high-end businesses, including trendy restaurants.
The current businesses must be out by the fall of 2020. An extension into 2021 is possible based on permit approvals.