Thursday, February 5, 2009

Local tidbits.

Nothing big happening, but lots of local small tidbits.


The cover story in the Bulletin about Jerry Opie and the Sole Shop was interesting. He was my neighbor downtown for 20 years. He's a wealth of information about downtown Bend.

He was in my store a couple of days ago, reminding me of the time that I signed a rent increase in my store, only to get it back a few days later with a rent decrease. Apparently the owner had tossed it back to the management company with the command..."lower it."

Jerry said there was a 60% vacancy rate downtown (I've always used the figure 40%) but that our building's 7 spaces were always 100% occupied.


It seemed to me that our choices in the city council last time were between the greedy and the really, really greedy. The stupid, and the really, really stupid.

Some people seem to think it a foregone conclusion that Leonard is going to win because he's got money backing him, but I think maybe, just maybe, the voters are paying attention this time.

It will be interesting to see which direction they'll turn.

I'm not terribly clear about the intentions of the different factions. I suspect that the Eckman faction will be both more price cutting (but not much), but also more developer supporting. The other faction, (Capell faction?) I believe, might be the opposite; supporting wasteful programs, but trying to tamp down on developers (but not much.)

What we need is half of each: price cutting, and developer resistant. But we'll probably get the opposite: developer accommodating and BAT and Juniper Ridge supporting.

A down to earth, independent minded councilor is what we really need.

Hard to see how that's going to happen.


Or 900 Wall.

I don't understand the appeal of restaurants with numbers in the title, but whatever...

This is pretty much the 'hermit crab' scenario I've been talking about. Shed most of the most onerous costs, and the place might have chance. It's still awfully big, but...the fact that it's being bought by the former manager bodes well.

I bought my store after managing it for a year, and hit the ground running. As smart as the previous owner had been (as he's shown by his great success in starting Dark Horse Comics) he hadn't been doing the job with Pegasus Books for a year or two. Being able to make the financial decisions helped get the store back on it's feet.


28% in Bend? That's a huge number, but it fits right in with the 20 to 30% drops that I believe most retail has suffered in Bend.


The Yarrow development in Madras has increased the sizes of their Phase One lots to roughly twice the size, and lowered the price by 2/3rds.

They try to put a positive spin on it, but those are pretty stark numbers.


And finally, things are looking pretty positive on the leasing front for Pegasus. I don't want to go into details until it's all signed and delivered, but it does look as though good, 'ol Pegasus Books will be around for another 4.5 years....

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