Business Feature: Local men acquire Hilltop property

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ staff writer

Though it’s not the high-traffic area Prince Street has become, Clovis’ Hilltop Plaza has plenty to offer potential new tenants — most recently, local ownership.

Three Clovis residents — Sid Strebeck, Brent Strebeck and David Petty — have acquired the northern part of the plaza under the name Masters Properties. The plaza includes tenants such as Cyber City and Kirby Co. of Clovis, along with the property that formerly housed Ben Franklin Crafts.

“We have some other commercial property,” Sid Strebeck said, “and it fits into our long-term plan to be a major player in the real estate market.”

The biggest change to the property will come with the former Hilltop Twin movie theater. Petty said the property is undergoing about $230,000 in renovations and will become a daycare center called Future Generations.

Current tenants of the plaza will see no change, Strebeck said, except for a local landlord. The previous landlords lived in Texas, Strebeck said.

Brent Strebeck will act as the property manager, Sid Strebeck said.

Petty said it’s harder for smaller, local businesses to survive nowadays, and he hopes the plaza can help small businesses even if it won’t make a huge real estate profit.

“Hopefully, our investment will come out of what rentals we get,” Petty said. “I won’t see it, but maybe my family will someday.”

The purchase is based on the timing of several factors.

Sid Strebeck felt the purchase was attractive because the closing of Ben Franklin Crafts opens up space for one or more businesses, and having land available for businesses is a good idea as the population will eventually grow from Cannon Air Force Base’s new mission.

With most businesses building along Prince Street over the last few years, the plaza wouldn’t be the first selection for some businesses. Petty thinks they can still offer businesses a good deal.

“There’s a lot of traffic this direction, but it’s not like Prince,” Petty said. “The advantage is the lower cost. (Building a new site) will cost (a business) twice as much as they would come here for.”

The owners wouldn’t disclose the purchase price or potential tenants, but Petty said they were in negotiations with a healthcare company before it decided it wasn’t ready to expand.