Garibaldi’s building up for redevelopment funds |

Garibaldi’s building up for redevelopment funds

by Sally J. Taylor

Owners of the building that houses Garibaldi’s Ristorante Italiano plan to transform the alley behind it into a European-style courtyard dining experience plus other improvements.

That’s assuming approval of redevelopment funds comes from the Carson City Redevelopment Authority Citizens Committee.

The committee meets tonight at 5:30 p.m. at the Brewery Arts Center at 449 W. King St.

The Sweetland Building downtown at the corner of North Carson and Proctor streets contains Garibaldi’s, the former Nick’s Pizza and upstairs offices. Constructed in the 1930s, the building has been owned by Thomas and Linda Johnson since 1993.

The Johnsons are requesting $100,000 in redevelopment incentive funding for extensive renovations on the Sweetland Building expected to cost about $525,000.

“Basically, the building needs to be updated,” Linda Johnson said. “The electrical and plumbing needs to be upgraded.”

Johnson, a member of the citizens committee, will recuse herself during discussions of the project.

A recent survey by the redevelopment committee found that 62 percent of people who come to Carson’s historic downtown stop to dine. Once out of their cars, they are more likely to stop at other businesses.

Because of that, Johnson believes enhancing the successful Italian restaurant is a plus for the downtown area.

Plans for the building interior include expanding Garibaldi’s into a portion of the Nick’s Pizza space to add seating, a bar area, an oyster bar, new restrooms, wine storage and kitchen storage.

What’s left of the pizza space will reopen with an Italian deli and pizza restaurant for casual dining in the smaller space. Mark and Jenny Claypool, owners of Garibaldi’s, will also take on the pizza/deli.

In addition, an elevator will be built for wheelchair access to upstairs offices.

But what the Johnsons and Claypools are most excited about is the plan to transform the alley between the Sweetland Building and the Nevada Commission on Economic Development office into an outdoor dining courtyard with a European feel.

“(The alley) looks pretty bad right now,” Johnson said. “But it looks better than it did before we moved the trash bins.”

With renovation, landscaping and a couple of fireplaces, they expect to open the protected courtyard for dining between May and October.

With approval of redevelopment funds, Johnson still isn’t sure how long the project will take to complete. Without those funds, the project would have to be scaled back.

“We’re really excited,” she said. “We’ve been planning it for several years.”


What: Redevelopment Authority Citizens Committee

When: 5:30 p.m. Tuesday

Where: Brewery Arts Center, 449 W. King St.