Recently there has been a decline in the vacancy rate of north end storefronts. However, the new uses are not classic downtown retail. They are more service oriented uses, which cater to the “captive” population in the residential areas to the east and west. These north end businesses have recognized and exploited this particular niche in the overall downtown market and have enjoyed success.
The City needs to ensure that the Northwest Residential neighborhood continues to represent a very pleasing, safe and ethnically diverse neighborhood.
Equally important to the success of the area, the City must recognize and support the grass roots efforts, which blend traditional values with emerging multi-cultural thoughts in the Ferry/Green mixed-use neighborhood. Zoning should be amended to clearly reflect and protect the residential character of these neighborhoods and aggressive code enforcement should continue.