Lindsay's Olivewood Plaza to be revitalized

By C.J. Barbre

LINDSAY-The Lindsay Olivewood Plaza (also referred to as the Save Mart shopping center) at Hermosa Street and Highway 65 is a busy place.

Present tenants include Straw Hat Pizza, a donut shop, Rite Aid, Save Mart, a dollar store, a laundromat, jewelry store, clothing store and a few other assorted businesses plus a McDonald's and a Taco Bell.

That makes for a lot of wear and tear, a lot of foot and car traffic. Things get run down. And then there is that big patch of dirt up front by the highway which has yet to have anything built on it. But all of that is about to change, starting with Lindsay's own Starbucks on the patch of dirt.

The shopping center has been purchased by Raymond Arjmand. At the Feb. 22 Lindsay City Council meeting Resolution 05-07, approving site plan review No. 04-40, a request by Arjmand to develop for retail use approximately 1.3 acres of vacant land for property located at the southeast corner of Hermosa Street and Highway 65 within the Olivewood Plaza Shopping Center passed.

Lindsay Community Development Director Bill Zigler told the council that the project will include a new 7,160 square foot building with three retail spaces including the drive-through Starbucks, and a 7,485 square foot addition to the existing shopping center which would add seven retail spaces. There will be an additional 70 parking spaces including four handicapped spaces and one loading zone. He introduced Mr. Arjmand.

"Our objective is to bring the shopping center to today's standard, to completely revitalize including new paint, covering the columns with tiles, putting in new sidewalks and benches and all new landscaping as well as repaving the parking lot," Arjmand said in his opening remark. He said they have already signed leases with Starbucks and a video rental store.

Arjmand said he wants to sign up other "national tenants" such as Fantastic Sams, "the world's largest hair care franchise, with salons located in five countries." Sams has a "fixed fee" system and "no appointment necessary" policy, offering cuts, perms and color the entire family, according to their website.

Arjmand went on to say, "The landscaping is very old and tired." He said they were hiring a landscape architect and planned to plant trees he described as "environmetally safe and don't drop a lot of leaves."

He said they plan to redo Taco Bell, add parking behind some of the buildings and install new signage. Arjmand said he has spent more than $150,000 on engineering and design. "I told tenants to plan to be ready by Jan. 30 and it didn't happen." He sounded a little frustrated, but the city is clearly in support of the project.

"The tenants will be happy when the dirt is filled in," Councilmember Danny Salinas observed.

Arjmand said the whole project will be completed by the end of 2005.

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