Jonesboro's Main Street thriving

Jonesboro (KAIT)-- It's hard to miss the construction going on in downtown Jonesboro.

Main Street is booming with new businesses and residential developments.  With all these additions, it's easy to forget the nation is in the middle of a recession.

"It really does take a village to pull something like this off," Clay Young of Young Investment Company, admits, "I'm not going to say that it's been easy."

Young praises the local banks, who have felt the recession strain, for their support in the developments.  He says that they, along with the city and the chamber of commerce saw the potential of Main Street to be a key area of Jonesboro.

"You have a thriving entertainment district with restaurants and unique living spaces that work together to create this atmosphere of charm." Young says.

This charming atmosphere is in high demand.  The foot traffic has increased in the past few years, leading many businesses to prosper.

Dan Johnson, owner of the Brickhouse, says that even though it sounds cliche, if the area is built and built well, the consumers will come.

"Our numbers are better than they were last year," He claims, "better than the year before."

So good in fact, Johnson is expanding his business.

Another business expanding is Dragon City. Susan Pan, who works at the Chinese restaurant, says that they have been there for many years and that business has been good.  After moving Dragon City to the building beside their current lot, the owners will be opening a Japanese food restaurant.

Businesses to be looking out for include a new Sushi restaurant, three restaurant chains out of Little Rock that include an Irish restaurant, Pizza place, and Barbeque restaurant.  Omar's Steakhouse will open another restaurant in downtown as well. Lofts are also being contructed as they are in high demand.

Young says that the goal for Main Street is to create an atmosphere that will be around for another hundred years.

Rebecca Lane