SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – From ghost town to boom town, downtown’s K Street is becoming a hot spot for new and old entrepreneurs. But while it’s thriving, another part of the street appears to be a big bust.

Call it the tale of two Ks with two different stories on one street. On one side, nearly all stores are leased, but on the other, stores are empty.

It’s a busy night inside Blackbird Kitchen and Bar, exactly what owner Carina Lampkin imagined when she opened the doors just eight months ago.

“We’re packed and everyone loves us,” said Lampkin.

However, Carina took a risk when she chose the downtown location.

“I know it will grow. I see it growing. I mean just what’s happened in between April and now is magnificent,” said Lampkin of K Street.

Just a few years ago, nearly one in four stores sat empty on the street. Now, nearly all those spaces are leased.

“In the past year, we’ve seen 26 new businesses open within downtown, and 14 of which have opened up here on the K,” said Lisa Martinez, Downtown Sacramento Partnership.

It has brought life to K Street, between 10th and 13th Street. However, it’s a much different story on 7th, 8th and 9th Streets of K. It’s an area where the stores remain closed.

“Just stay tuned, because you’re going to see it,” said Leslie Fritzsche, City of Sacramento.

The city of Sacramento holds the answer. They’re working with investors to build housing units on that side of K Street. It’s a slow process, but the city promises this time it’s moving forward.

“As soon as we work out a few more details with our financing, we think they’ll be under construction within 2013,” said Fritzsche.

The Downtown Sacramento Partnership says for the most part, new businesses are thriving for now.

Lampkin agrees, but the momentum must continue. And as long as it does, she believes that Blackbird will continue to thrive and will have a second location in five years.

Adding to the booming business, Downtown & Vine, a new wine tasting room on K Street, just opened up on Thursday.


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