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Two businesses open, three close downtown

COVINGTON — Two new businesses have opened on the Square in Covington, and there are four prospects — two retail and two restaurants — that could open in the future, according to the chair of the Main Street Covington Board of Directors.

Square Fit, an exercise studio on Washington Street, and Just Dream, a refurbished furniture and interior design store on Clark Street, are the new businesses, said Serra Phillips during her quarterly report to the Covington City Council.

Though three businesses have closed — Fantasy Jewelry Box and Touched by an Angel Hair Services and one, United Bank, has relocated, Phillips said there are four active prospects and two conceptual projects that could locate downtown.

“There are still people wanting to fill our doors and our vacancies downtown, which is incredibly positive that they want to come and be in our district,” Phillips said.

There are two properties for sale, four available to lease and three office suites currently available.

There were 22 permits issued in the downtown and 12 special events in April, May and June, and more than 6,500 people attended events downtown in those months, according to the report. There were four days when filming/production took place downtown. A total of 388 volunteer hours were reported, including time planning and preparing for events such as Independence in the Park.

“I think that shows that a lot of people are invested in the program as well as in our town and our community,” Phillips said.

Phillips thanked former director Josephine Kelly for her 12 years of service. Kelly’s resignation was effective June 7, but city officials requested she stay on to handle administrative work associated with Independence in the Park until that event was over.

“What a wonderful asset that we’ve had her for 12 years and I know that she’s going to do great things in the future,” Phillips said.

Phillips said Kelly and one downtown business, Dizzy Dame, will be highlighted in a video about downtowns for a new generation that will air at the September annual conference of the Georgia Municipal Association.

Planning Director Randy Vinson is currently serving as interim director.

Phillips said it’s been “fruit basket turnover” with the Main Street board recently, with five member rotating off the board. The board still has two vacancies; one a Chamber of Commerce appointment previously held by retired Tourism Director Clara Deemer and the other, an at-large vacancy. Current board members are Nicole Greer, Amy Hill, Susan Kirk, Allan Seebaran, Andrea Smith, Denise Spires, Susan Thompson, Treasa Waters and Phillips.

“We’re excited. It’s a whole new group, a whole new face and a whole new transition,” she said.

Comments

Citizen19 8 months, 4 weeks ago

How is loosing 3 an only gaining 2 new business a positive? It seems that Wal Mart has hurt local shop owners and now taxpayers will be footing the bills for Baxter. These industries are sold to us on the fact that they add more jobs to the local economy and help grow the tax base. Although what have we seen SPLOST and ESPLOST passes because our tax dollars can not fund our needs in the county. Shame on the Chamber they are always wanting more money but what positive results have they brought to our local econonmy? Our tax base is down and unemployment is higher. Hunter Hall's soulution bring Baxter in on the back of taxpayers and the BOC will go along with it!

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dennistay53 8 months, 3 weeks ago

Losing 3 gaining 2 is what I call going out the world backwards. They should be looking at the reason the 3 failed before the 2 coming in fail as well. The chamber is using the taxpayers funds going after high ends jobs that will not come to Newton anymore with high tax and very low per capti income. The walmart, dollar stores, and McDonalds etc will come without a chamber or incentives because low income is their base.

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