Having a nose for easy college deals on subs and cafe drinks, on El Cajon Boulevard in the College area, takes a dedication to staying in stride with the small business owner who patch together the stop in spots SDSU students have made a habit. Jersey Mike's Subs at the corner of College Avenue takes cash for a sandwich from customers, one after another. But, the small shop would leave many disappointed if it were the only sub seller on the blocks undergoing revitalization.
The full colored Aztec indian welcome drivers who pass by on the boulevard. New store fronts to the east, the blocks south of the campanile blessed campus, have been newly made to welcome typical active, and healthy, students who take advantage of exploring the tastes found all in one place.
Cheba Hut's front enlivens its block just east with its ripe green and yellow. Subway, just walker's steps away, does not have such a colorful street name. Just a modest front that draws in students, and fits the small business conclave.
Old bricks and sound, but roughed out, gray concrete have become a scanty presence. Shoppers who stop in at Smart & Final find smooth faced sheltered fronts, painted in softer hues. Tiles that look like bricks match the Smash Burger down the street.
All the pieces have yet to fall into place. The last leg on the street revitalization work that was undertaken with a project begun in 2012 to replace the sidewalks from 54th Street out past 70th Street, will not come until well into the 2020s.
Unbroken paths locals can use to live every day remain on order. Mixed use living and business centers,ones larger than the Campus Village Apartments not far west on El Cajon Boulevard, have been taking the place of diverse lines of petty cash shops and neigborhood sized homes around 63rd and Art Streets.
Everything has to be on hand nearby. Modern roofs are made to house village living stops.
The shop line drivers see as they come and go down the west that ends at 54th Street has been fixed up from one end to the other. San Diego's Storefront Improvement Program helps the local owners leave no corner neglected. Wireless mobile shops are just the most happening stores. Steady businesses like the Afro Barber shop have do a little more than brush up the front. Red and white paint makes the Kempo Karate studio front well made for small group get togethers. Not beaten down.
Locals can count on the fence gate fronts at the auto sales lots staying around. But, even collectors piece buildings are vulnerable to improvement work that makes the building look closer to the community's new look.
Today, the family health practice steps at the building standing near 54th Street brighten up its block. The high building gives the staff room to accomplish their community health mission but makes the nearby Launderland match up little, and slim. A quick glimpse is saved for the Wild Harmony wellness center farther towards the College Avenue crossroads. There, there is a line of modern brick front, wood, and flush paint across three shops.
Most the low, one to two story, unique shop houses have had their day. The money the College Economic Development Corporation collects from owners in the Business Improvement District is being used to resist choices to keep retroactive styles from having a place near wi-fi equipped cafes. Students escape lives on the street filled with blight. And, facade improvements, and building work, do the beautification job the community wants done.
To read earlier articles, read
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