The Alpha Resource Center moved its donation center Wednesday from a tent on its main campus on Cathedral Oaks Road to a building at La Cumbre Plaza.
The new donation center is located in the former Sears auto center at 3845 State St., Santa Barbara.
“It’s great for the donors to be able to come in and out. It’s one way in and one way out on a loop,” Caleb Nerstad, senior operations manager for the Alpha Resource Center, told the News-Press Thursday.
“At the previous location, it was more of a quagmire, especially with trucks,” Mr. Nerstad said.
He noted the new location means a smoother process for donors.
“It’s a convenient spot next to the 101,” he said. “The new location is the perfect size and the floor plan. It’s less of a fire hazard and less crowded,”
“The old distribution center was located at the main campus on Cathedral Oaks Rd. is just past the 154 west, and it was in the gully. It wasn’t very visual,” he said. “So unless you looked it up, you never noticed it driving by.
“The new location is much more visual, and there is a lot of foot traffic,” he said. “Also word spreads pretty quickly in Santa Barbara. We share the parking lot with the Santa Barbara AirBus. I met with reps yesterday to discuss traffic flow,” said Mr. Nerstad.
He said the donation center is receiving donations Wednesday through Sunday, but within a month, it will receive donations seven days a week.
Mr. Nerstad said the new location will prove to be great for the Alpha Resource Center and its donors. He explained the center will be able to process more donations at the large indoor location than it could at its previous outdoor tent.
The donation center, which occupies the former auto center, isn’t the only entity in the former Sears store.
“We have a lot of support from the businesses downstairs, such as Mattress Mike,” Mr. Nerstad said. “I think it is going to be a good spot. I’m just very thankful that this arose. It’s really a blessing to get this opportunity, and the end result is the people it supports. It’s a win all around.”