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Add Restaurants, Oddity, Boutique Shops Downtown

Huntsville has done a decent job of increasing diversity of retail/recreation Downtown. There's still a lot that needs to happen for us to be come a "destination" city though.

Huntsville could encourage more local (non-chain) restaurants to open up Downtown (especially mid-priced semi-casual restaurants that appeal to young professionals or young families.) A few more sports bars with a family atmosphere would be good too.

Perhaps the city can offer financial incentives to chefs and entrepreneurs who will set-up downtown, with mentorships from established restaurants to ensure more success. Same goes for boutique retail. Perhaps a deal can be struck with lease-holders on key properties to incentivize this as well.

The mid-sized cities that are attracting the most new jobs and growth in 2014 ALL have vibrant Downtowns. If we homeowners in the greater-Huntsville area want to ensure our investments are maintained, we need to be creating our own, unique "destination city" in an affordable, low-tax state. Talk about a win-win!


Submitted by 1 year ago

Comments (5)

  1. Moderator

    There's good news if you're looking for restaurants. A lot of places are looking at HSV, and Downtown in particular. These include locals as well as regional/national chains. I think most folks know that Twickenham Square has several good options (including Cajun Steamer and Taco Mama) signed on, and as other sites like the Holiday Inn and the Coke site redevelop, we're bound to see more. I think the popularity of the food truck events in particular has shown folks that there's an appetite (pun intended) for quality dining Downtown.

    1 year ago
  2. HSV.future Idea Submitter

    It would be nice if the city could take the area near Sammy T's/Humphery's, etc. and make it a "dining district" of sorts. Encourage new restaurants to build in "sidewalk tables" and give them the proper licensing to do it. Cities like Ashville, Boise and Austin do a great job of encouraging these "dining districts' with indoor-outdoor store-fronts, etc. Let's take advantage of our long warm weather season!

    1 year ago
  3. The square downtown is well on it's way but just needs more restaurant options, venues and shops. We moved here from Decatur... mainly to have a more walkable downtown. City planners (in Decatur) are ripping the city apart by trying to have 4 disconnected areas of restaurants (Bank st, 2nd ave, 6th ave and Beltline) I hope Huntsville continues to keep things tight together! The food truck events are a perfect example of what happens if you have lots of options in a small area.

    1 year ago
  4. It's cool to see HSV.future reference Boise. As we've watched our downtown finally begin to become a happening place, my wife and I have regularly joked "well, it's not Boise yet". Boise (population 214,237) is a good model for Huntsville.

    1 year ago
  5. I agree that there needs to be more choices downtown, but I'm not tied to local-only. I'm ok with chains, so long as they are affordable. Cotton Row and The Bottle are not going to bring in a younger crowd, as they can't afford those restaurants. Something like a Mugshots or Qdoba would be a tremendous addition to downtown.

    11 months ago

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  1. The idea was posted
    1 year ago