Twenty Ninth Switches Muttropolis For LensCrafters

The Twenty Ninth Street shopping district is losing Muttropolis and gaining LensCrafters.

The 2000 + square foot retail space near the northwest end of Twenty Ninth street is losing the Muttropolis store due to low traffic and sales.

The canine supply retain store has its roots in its California-based locations in cities along the beach. In addition to lots of online sales, and retail sales in Tucson, AZ, Muttropolis has brick and mortar stores in the beachfront properties of La Jolla, Solana Beach and Newport Beach.

I’m thinking that Twenty Ninth was a decent idea since Pearl Street doesn’t allow pet owners to bring their animals onto the famous pedestrian shopping and tourist destination. While many cities continue to make efforts to mimic the style, ambiance and success of the Pearl Street Mall in downtown Boulder, few strides in this direction succeed.

In some respects, the Twenty Ninth shopping district followed this trend of outdoor shopping experiences but, to date, is still working to find its own identity. Though the Twenty Ninth property has some cool shops and some decent food, it looks like Boulder still hasn’t ‘discovered’ fully what it has to offer.

You might find yourself trekking to Twenty Ninth for some particular destination such as a movie at the Century Theater, or dinner at the Boulder staple, Laodisio’s. What apparently isn’t happening yet is Twenty Ninth Street getting foot traffic for the environmental experience.

That’s perhaps what Solana Beach, La Jolla or even Downtown Boulder’s Pearl Street have that Twenty Ninth is missing: ambiance and intrinsic experiential value. It’s all very ethereal on some level, I suppose. You can’t  create the ‘thing’ that creates the draw. There are outdoor mall experiences being built all over the country. Several in fact, right here in Colorado.

Stapleton, Bradburn in Westminster, Flatiron Marketplace in Broomfield, and Lowry just to name a few. I’ve come across some others as I’ve ventured out to work my real estate business and I find one constant: they’re all just processing a formula that the developers believe is a key to financial success. Funny thing is, maybe Costner didn’t quite have it right. They may come if you build it in a Hollywood movie, but in real life there has to be something more than a formula.

Too bad for Muttropolis and for Twenty Ninth though, given that Pearl St. doesn’t allow dogs (and I think for good reason), this was a great store that fits so well in a community where dog owners love to take their dog everywhere they go. LensCrafters? It may be good to have another tenant and the associated rent, but it does nothing for the ambiance or ‘draw’ that might help Twenty Ninth turn the corner and eventually pull shoppers who are tired of parking woes and panhandlers so common downtown.

Do you have a favorite at Twenty Ninth Street? How about the Apple store, that specialty, high-end jeans store for young women, or Peets Coffee (yeah, there’s a starbucks, but everyone I talk to swears Peets is far superior coffee). If you have a place you like and it’s only at Twenty Ninth, I suggest you vote with your feet and your dollars and help keep those businesses in the black. Can you say ‘free underground parking’? It’s also got great views of the Flatirons, an easy walk to McGuckins, Video Station, or even Lather Salon.


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