SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Jonathan Goldwasser was one of the first business owners to set up shop inside One Paseo in Del Mar Heights.
He opened the Parakeet Cafe when One Paseo’s retail area launched in March 2019 - and followed that up a few months later with Juice Crafters.
He says business is of course best when the plaza is full.
However, One Paseo has been anything but full since March, when coronavirus restrictions went into effect.
“This has been hard,” Goldwasser said. “We went from maybe 20 employees to four.”
Things, however, changed this week, when One Paseo fully reopened its retail center. On Thursday, there were people sitting at its socially distant tables and chairs, while shoppers in masks walked down its courtyard.
“Little by little we are hoping that we will get back to where we were before COVID,” Goldwasser said, noting he’s back up to about 20 workers.
About 25% of the center’s 40-plus businesses are mom-and-pops that rely on foot traffic.
Juice Crafters closed entirely and Parakeet Cafe was reduced to takeout and delivery, sales going down 80%. They’ve since recovered and are now off 40% from pre-coronavirus levels.
“Little by little we are hoping that we will get back to where we were before COVID,” Goldwasser said.
The City Council approved One Paseo, a residential, retail and office complex in 2015. However, a referendum from nearby residents and the mall across the street ensued. Developer Kilroy scaled back the center to its current $470 million version, which opened last year just south of Del Mar Heights Road.
Now that it’s open, there are social distancing rules in place. The center has also increased security to ensure the rules are followed and added sanitation protocols.
Most of One Paseo’s retailers are now open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.