What makes a “restaurant district?” How does one evolve? What do restaurant owners look for when choosing a location? The article “The Good Life: Roseville builds it’s own distinctive restaurant district” on sacbee.com is very insightful and interesting. Restaurants, such as those in the “Eureka Road District” are important to the success – business and residential – of the area. “If we want people to live locally and be more green, we need districts like this near where people live.” says Robin Datel, Geography Chair CSU Sacramento.
“One thing about cities and regions that helps define their personality and sense of community is their restaurant districts, and this region has its share of those, including one or two we don’t really think of as restaurant rows.
All have different styles and the vibes can be poles apart, but as urban geographer Robin Datel said, eating and drinking are almost always at the center of the commercial and social success of an area, and that includes what we call suburbia.
That, of course, is no big news flash. But it’s easy to forget how important some of those restaurant districts are to the region, even if they don’t quite seem like actual “districts” in the sense of strolling casually beside tree- covered cafes.
That surely includes the stretch of Eureka Road in Roseville just off Interstate 80 that has maybe the largest concentration of eating and drinking spots with some genuine character outside the central city.
“That district really is something significant,” said Datel, who chairs the geography department at California State University, Sacramento. “Even though it’s very different from midtown and hasn’t achieved the stature of the city core, it’s important.
This is no huddle of freeway fast-food spots. In the roughly half-mile from North Sunrise Avenue to Lead Hill Boulevard are more than a dozen substantial restaurants and a bunch more smaller spots, most of them locally owned, many of them big Sacramento names.
There are Paul Martin’s American Bistro, Crush 29, MÃ¡s Cocina Mexicana, Suede Blue, Bravo Pastaria, Ruen Thai, Blue Nami, Fat’s Asia Bistro, Mikuni Japanese Restaurant. That’s a lot of local energy and investment.
What makes this area a bit unusual is how it evolved. Many suburban districts earmark spots for big national chains when they draw up development plans. Eureka Road, on the other hand, was settled by Roseville-area restaurateurs who recognized the growth in the area, the increasing number of offices and the traffic patterns.
The collection of restaurants and shops in Roseville’s Stone Point, just north of Rocky Ridge Drive, is a good example of the new gathering spots outside city centers. It has restaurants ranging from Paul Martin’s to the Pita Pit, and is sort of an outdoor mall and sort of an ersatz Mediterranean-style village with tile roofs, warm colors, lots of tile and stone and outdoor seating, all right next to a large parking lot. It’s a completely pleasant environment, if also completely manufactured.
Roseville, in truth, is much more than a suburb. It’s a city in its own right, and an important piece in the eclectic puzzle that is the Sacramento region. And what’s happening on Eureka Road is both good for this area and a lesson in how cities grow and, sometimes, how complicated life can get when you own a restaurant.”
To read the article in its entirety visit sacbee.com