by The Press and Standard | December 6, 2018 5:00 am
Last Updated: December 5, 2018 at 9:48 am
The face of East Washington Street has changed significantly since the last time Santa Claus paraded through the city’s traditional downtown.
In November The Painted Pineapple, Vis A Vis and Wildflowers Boutique made their way onto East Washington Street.
Assistant City Manager Hank Amundson said, “The city is excited to see this recent wave of new businesses in our historic downtown. A lot of work has been done over the years by the chamber of commerce, the city and especially the many interested and invested private individuals.”
He sees the growth of new businesses on East Washington Street as a domino effect, the first domino falling when city council invested heavily in continued beautification in the city’s downtown area.
After that domino fell into place, the improved appearance of the downtown area began attracting new merchants who joined the established businesses.
“This increase in recent private investment is exciting, as this has always been the goal,” said Amundson, whose duties with the city include economic development.
“The purchasing and renovation of buildings was, and is, a necessary step in moving forward and that has increased over the past couple of years,” he said. “Thanks to a creative and diversified group of local entrepreneurs, these spaces are being filled and now offer more choices for citizens and visitors.
“This all makes our historic downtown a more vibrant, attractive place to shop, dine, do business and enjoy,” he said, “which leads to even more new businesses.”