Swaps store fronts with Bland Solar Company on Traffic Way

ATASCADERO — Those searching for records in Atascadero will be pleased to hear the Traffic Records has recently relocated to a larger space only twenty feet from where it sat before. Traffic Records and Bland Solar Company and Show Room saw their leases come time for renewal and decided it would be mutually beneficial to switch as the record store needed more sales space and Bland Solar was open to a smaller location.

During the first week of February, the two businesses made the change, and now Traffic Records sits at 5850 Traffic Way while Bland is at 5870. Due to the tight restrictions placed on businesses based on square footage, Traffic Records owner Manuel Barba was forced to make a decision.

“The max number of occupancy that I could have of shoppers at any one time was two to three with people waiting outside. As the store got increasingly more successful and busier, I found myself setting up a lounge area outside in the hopes that people might stick around and wait,” Barba said. “I didn’t feel like I had much of a choice; it felt like the walls were closing in on me. People would come in, and I would get anxiety because I would have three people inside and three people outside.”

While the pandemic undoubtedly hurt the business by restricting the number of people allowed inside, in a way, it also helped as it forced the local record store to pivot and expand their business model.

Getting through this together, Atascadero

“I am kind of thankful for the need of pivoting,” Barba explained. “It challenged me as a business owner to get creative to reach a bigger, broader market.”

Traffic Records now ships records worldwide, including places in foreign countries like Australia and New Zealand and across the US to major cities such as New York, Chicago, and New Orleans.

Traffic Records has more than double the sales space in the new location and is filled with records from every genre and every time period. Beginning in 2021, you can also find new records in the store as well as all the classic hits you could ever want.

Traffic Records is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday’s from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.