Business

Forden’s is moving out, but what might move in?

A history of Forden's, which opened in SLO in the 1920s

Forden's, a family-owned business that opened in San Luis Obispo in the 1920s and has occupied its Monterey Street space since 1950, will consolidate its business to a warehouse on Sacramento Drive. Dean Moore, co-owner of Forden's, talks about th
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Forden's, a family-owned business that opened in San Luis Obispo in the 1920s and has occupied its Monterey Street space since 1950, will consolidate its business to a warehouse on Sacramento Drive. Dean Moore, co-owner of Forden's, talks about th

The new owner of a historic Monterey Street building in San Luis Obispo — currently occupied by Forden’s hearth and home store — will begin soliciting offers from potential new tenants April 1.

San Luis Obispo-based developer Andy Mangano recently bought the building at 857 Monterey St., which has housed Forden’s under different owners since 1950.

Mangano has declined to comment on the purchase price, but a Jan. 31 record of a deed at the county Clerk-Recorder’s Office shows the transfer tax, which indicates the price tag, was about $2.9 million. The exact sales price figure could be slightly more or less based on how that tax was calculated.

Mangano is the developer behind the Marsh Street Brownstones and Avila Ranch project, both in San Luis Obispo. He also built the Marsh Street Commons homes.

Mangano said he’s working with Chris Richardson of Richardson Properties and Chris Garner of Pacifica Commercial Realty to find an occupant, noting that the monthly lease rate is “confidential.”

“We’d prefer not to solicit a restaurant user,” Mangano said. “Our preference would be for a retail outlet.”

Forden’s co-owner Dean Moore last week announced plans to move the business, which his family and partner Gary Smee have operated since 1989, by the end of the year. Forden’s will consolidate operations at its warehouse at 3540 Sacramento Drive, where it will focus on selling hearth, barbecue and other home accessories; renovations at that location will take place as soon as the company receives a city permit to begin.

Moore said a motivating factor for selling the building was that Mangano “made me an offer that I couldn’t refuse.”

The building, constructed in the 1920s, is located across the street from Williams-Sonoma and consists of about 4,400 square feet.

As Mangano prepares for a new tenant, he has hired Pierre Rademaker to redesign the exterior of the building with a mission-style theme. The building is located near the mission, and the front elevation will be reconfigured to add a little more height and mass, Mangano said.

The timing of the work and the move-in of a new tenant will depend on when Forden’s moves out.

The interior of the Monterey Street building may be renovated as well, but that will be depend on the new tenant’s type of operation, according to Mangano.

“This is a great building and a great location, and a great opportunity for us,” he said.

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