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Wednesday, December 12 , 2018, 1:54 pm | Fair 63º


Target Opens Windows into Design Intentions for Santa Barbara Store at Galleria Site

Architectural Review Board praises plans for street windows but requests more details on angles and sight lines

An existing design feature at Target’s new Santa Barbara store is a half-circle arch that provides a convenient location for the company’s trademark bulls-eye logo. Target officials presented the Architectural Board of Review with their proposed changes for the 32,000-square-foot-building at 3891 State St. Click to view larger
An existing design feature at Target’s new Santa Barbara store is a half-circle arch that provides a convenient location for the company’s trademark bulls-eye logo. Target officials presented the Architectural Board of Review with their proposed changes for the 32,000-square-foot-building at 3891 State St. (Target Corp. illustration)

Santa Barbara is getting a new Target, and a Starbucks, all inside a 32,000-square-foot-building. What a deal.

Representatives from Minneapolis-based Target Corp. offered the first glimpse of the project at last week’s Architectural Board of Review meeting. The store is set to go inside the Barry Berkus-designed Galleria building at 3891 State St. on the southwest corner of La Cumbre Road.

The Target won’t be the double-level giant, with specially designed escalators to transport shopping carts, as is the case in Oxnard. Instead, Santa Barbarans will get a small-scale store, and a “grab-and-go” Starbucks.

The ABR, in general, supported the project, but asked the Target executives to make some changes, and come back on March 12 for another shot.

“We want to open this year, in fact we are going to open this year, so yes we need to get this done,” John Dewes, regional development manager for Target, told ABR chairman Kirk Gradin.

Gradin rushed Dewes through his opening presentation. He had attempted to explain the overall context of the neighborhood, and why the small Target store fits in, but Gradin noted that the board had reviewed several nearby projects recently and already was up to speed on the area.

“We’re very familiar with it,” Gradin said.

Still, Dewes explained how a Target that is 32,000 square feet works at the site when most other Target stores are between 120,000 and 150,000 square feet.

“The whole idea is that it is a different concept from our full-size stores, which is what most of our people and most of our guests know,” Dewes said. “These small formats are for more suburban areas. They are much more neighborhood designed.”

Small-format stores in other areas, he said, range from about 12,000 square feet to 50,000 square feet.

“It is much more of a convenience model where our guests will use this as an infill, oftentimes to come in and pick up specific items they may be out of,” Dewes said. “But they may still use our large-format stores — although in this area there are not any nearby — for their larger shopping needs.

“It is a much quicker shopping experience.”

Bill Huntress, lead design project architect for Target, said the goal was to tie the architecture into the surrounding area, particularly the nearby Marc apartment development, which opened in 2017.

The Galleria building was designed by Berkus, a well-regarded local architect who died in 2012, and was almost demolished after an 89-unit apartment project was approved for the site. Target, however, bought out the lease for the project and is now looking to bring in its store, with only a few tweaks to the building.

Target plans to add several windows to the façade along State Street to allow people to see in and “realize there is a new activity there and try to pull them into the building,” Huntress said.

Windows also would be added to the La Cumbre Road side, where Target wants to use “glazing” so people can get glimpses inside.

Target also plans to lease some space for a “grab-and-go” Starbucks “because the one across the street is too far,” ABR member David Watkins joked.

The Galleria features a half-circle arch at the top of the building facing State Street. The circle, Huntress said, actually lends itself well to the Target logo. Target plans to put glass inside the opening of the circle, as well as its familiar red and white bulls-eye logo.

“We’re trying to keep the essence of the building as it is, but upgrade it and increase the transparency,” he said.

The ABR members were supportive of the plans, but asked Target to return with more street-view angles of the building and the equipment that Target will need to place on its roof, to see if it’s visible and visually obstructive. The board also suggested even more windows on the second story.

The ABR requested that Target plant green vegetation to cover some of the first-floor trellis materials so that it becomes “a green wall as opposed to a metal fence,” Gradin said.

Parking wasn’t discussed, but plans call for the site to have about 90 spaces.

“This is a tough project,” ABR member Kevin Moore said. “I think the direction is positive. I do wish these new openings were a little more grand to get a little more visibility and light into the building.”

Watkins called the La Cumbre Road side of the building “prison-like,” but overall he said he liked the direction Target was taking.

“I appreciate the fact that you guys even want to approach this building and try to slap some lipstick on it,” Watkins said. “It is a Berkus project, and personally I loved it for my own reasons, but that doesn’t mean it holds for the rest of the community.

“So I think what you guys are doing is successful. You are doing some great little improvements.”

Noozhawk staff writer Joshua Molina can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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