Study conducted on Tahoe City’s vacancy situation | SierraSun.com

Study conducted on Tahoe City’s vacancy situation

David Bunker
Sierra Sun

Emma Garrard/Sierra SunKathy Loudon walks out of Java Juice Wrap and Bagel in Tahoe City after buying lunch Monday afternoon. The coffee shop is next to a vacant restaurant that was formerly Coyotes, a Mexican restaurant. It is one of seven vacant restaurant spaces in Tahoe City available for lease.

If you wander through Tahoe City’s downtown you will see a string of restaurants offering American and Mexican food, coffee and bagels.

What you will also find is a half dozen vacant storefronts, waiting for restaurateurs willing to pay the rent and open an eatery.

One real estate agency decided to study the town’s restaurant situation and solicit input from locals to see what restaurants are needed in Tahoe City.

The Coldwell Banker report studied the restaurants that are open, their styles of food, and the vacancies. The real estate firm then compared Tahoe City to other ski resort towns like Mammoth, Aspen, Breckenridge and Jackson Hole.

“We’re trying to find out what Tahoe City needs,” said Andy Otto, a leasing agent for Coldwell Banker Commercial. “We don’t have a monopoly on good ideas.”

The study parallels a similar effort by the Tahoe City Downtown Merchants Association to find out what businesses are succeeding in Tahoe City and what services are lacking.

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The empty spaces are a problem, said Kelly Atchley, executive director of the merchants association.

“Anything that’s vacant is a concern because it gives the perception that something is wrong downtown,” said Atchley.

Atchley said that during the process of compiling her survey, she has heard locals talk about what is needed downtown.

“We need the high-end [restaurants], but we also need a place for families to eat or else they will not come back,” Atchley said.

She has heard people ask for an affordable Italian eatery, a Thai restaurant and a place to grab a vegetarian dinner.

Vacancies around town vary in size and include the former locations for Sierra Vista, Lakefront Pizza, Pierce Street Annex, Truffula, Za’s and Coyotes. Other openings are available in new buildings around town.

“I hate to have an empty restaurant in town,” said Otto.

To see a complete analysis of the Tahoe City Restaurant Comparison, to tell Coldwell Banker the type of restaurants you would like to see, or for information on the vacancies, please contact Andy Otto or Beth Newman at Coldwell Banker Commercial at 587-1163 or andyotto@telis.org and beth@resortcommercial.com.

The Tahoe City Downtown Merchant’s Association survey should be released within weeks, said Atchley.