News

Recruiting restaurants, shops to Menlo Park

 

A retail recruitment firm with access to data about the spending habits of people who live, work and shop in Menlo Park – aggregated anonymously, city staff members say – has been hired to research and help court potential retailers and restaurants to come to Menlo Park.

On Dec. 6, the Menlo Park City Council agreed to authorize a one-year, $60,000 contract with consumer analytics consultant Buxton Co.

Research and recruitment would cover all of Menlo Park, including Belle Haven and future retail sites, according to Jim Cogan, the city's housing and economic development manager.

Lisa McCay, senior vice president at Buxton Co., told the council, "We're looking to fill gaps where there's opportunity for growth, not necessarily add more of the same."

Comments

11 people like this
Posted by Beth
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 14, 2016 at 12:45 pm

I'd like to be the first to throw my hat into the ring for this job. For $60,00, I'd be delighted.

But isn't this something that is the right and responsibility of the building/land owner, generally? What's the point of this study, how is it to be facilitated or is it for information only? And wouldn't Jim Cogan, MP's housing and economic development manager be able to do this as part of his job? A paying job of $$?

This study will be from studying, anonymously, the shopping habits of people who live, shop and/or work in Menlo. Not necessarily residents. And what will this consist of, other than collecting data from sales receipts?

The company rep told council "We're looking to fill gaps where there's opportunity for growth…" What does this mean?! It's not like we're struggling to gain more growth!

Lastly, aren't there better ways to spend $60,000? Ask the people.


10 people like this
Posted by Flushing dollars
a resident of Menlo Park: Felton Gables
on Dec 14, 2016 at 1:00 pm

This is a ridiculous waste of money. The City pays a full time economic development manager to do this work. Also, isn't the Chamber of Commerce involved in attracting businesses to Menlo Park. I thought all the new development on El Camino in the Specific Plan was supposed to create "foot traffic" to attract retail.

Which Councilmembers voted for this?


3 people like this
Posted by georg0
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 14, 2016 at 1:38 pm

georg0 is a registered user.

"I thought all the new development on El Camino in the Specific Plan was supposed to create "foot traffic" to attract retail."

Yes, indeed, as well as the additional billions spent on the specific plan, general plan revisions, Facebook an other development. City Manager and Council apparently made some perhaps ill advised assumptions. Wouldn't it be interesting if retail and restaurants are put off by all the new traffic and congestion.


11 people like this
Posted by Barbara
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 14, 2016 at 2:52 pm

Did the city council just wake up to the fact that people don't want furniture stores in our downtown? We need stores that bring people to the area more than once a year. I suggest that the city council take a field trip to San Carlos, Los Altos or Redwood City to see what a thriving downtown looks like.


6 people like this
Posted by James Madison
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 14, 2016 at 5:16 pm

Either the incumbent nicely salaried development manager is not doing his job, in which case he should be fired, or this contract is a waste. Viewed a bit differently, we have a broad array of restaurants, but parking is a challenge for those alone El Camino.


Like this comment
Posted by MPer
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 15, 2016 at 2:35 pm

How is parking along El Camino a challenge? Every restaurant on ECR has a parking lot in back or nearby.

The council should take a walk down SCA. Too many shops close at 6 and only service people every few years or less (furniture and design stores).

Even the La Boulagerie closes at 8, the bagel shops close at like 3 and the MP cafe also closes early.

Seems strange that they would pay $600k for outdoor seating areas and then hire a consultant??

Hope they also realize the parking canyons are terrible.




3 people like this
Posted by new guy
a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Dec 15, 2016 at 2:51 pm

60K.

I will do it for 45K. Just let me know........


Like this comment
Posted by easong
a resident of another community
on Dec 15, 2016 at 6:17 pm

It's clear to me that Menlo needs more antique shops and salons, especially places where ladies can get their hair and nails done. Maybe a few more chain restaurants on Santa Cruz Ave. Just make sure that whatever goes in won't draw the wrong element in after dark, you know -- people who like beer, that sort.


2 people like this
Posted by James Madison
a resident of Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park
on Dec 22, 2016 at 6:59 pm

FYI, MPer, While customers at Cafe Borrone, Cooks Seafood, Menlo Grill and the Oasis have convenient parking available, nearby parking for diners at such restaurants as Trellis, the next door Mexican restaurant and the about-to-be successor to Su Hong is a challenge. Patrons must compete for space at the tiny lot behind the Santa Cruz Avenue BofA office, and Left Bank patrons may also try that lot.

The Japanese restaurants on El Camino South of Santa Cruz are in even worse shape for nearby parking

The soon-to-be successor to The Hub has its own lot, but that too is small compared to the hoped-for patronage.


Like this comment
Posted by really?
a resident of Menlo Park: other
on Dec 23, 2016 at 8:43 am

BUILD THE PARKING GARAGE!


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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