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Half-baked Apple store takes shape behind walls on State St.

By   /   Friday, February 20th, 2009  /   Comments Off on Half-baked Apple store takes shape behind walls on State St.

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Ask anyone what the worst-kept secret in town is, and they’ll tell you: the new Apple building in downtown Santa Barbara, which is undergoing an extensive renovation.

The computer giant is spending a small fortune – and making a large racket – demolishing and rebuilding the 9,594-square-foot retail space at 928 State St., which housed Pier 1 Imports until early 2008.

Demolition contractor Terry Stobie of Urban Pacific Demolition said his team is completely restructuring the building, leaving nothing left but the four walls after demolition was complete.

“The building used to have a mezzanine, but the next tenant wanted two stories so everything had to come out,” he said. The original space had 4,375 square feet of interior mezzanine as well as stairs and an elevator, but Apple scrapped all that in favor of 3,706 square feet of new second-story floor area.

According to documentation on file with the city, Apple will only occupy the first floor; the second floor “will be a completely separate [tenant] at a later date.”

No telling who that may be, though. Apple representatives wouldn’t even confirm that the company would be moving into the State Street location. With their level of secrecy, the second-story tenant may remain a mystery for a while longer.

On-site demolition supervisor Elijio Qurnoz guided Urban Pacific through the demolition and is now overseeing the installation of the building’s new framework and second floor.

At the conclusion of demolition work in late December and early January, Stobie estimated that it would take another three to four months to complete the construction.

The floor joists and foundation have been completed and the construction crew is working on rough framing right now.

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