Pontiac Celebrates Several New Businesses

ScottWrightadTOPPontiac lisa schmidt lawCelebrates Several New Businesses

(C. Proxmire, Aug. 13, 2015)

“I’ve been cutting ribbons all over Pontiac,” said Mayor Deidre Waterman as she and nearly a dozen business owners prepared to slice through the thick blue ribbon stretched across the walkway in front of a freshly painted 1860 two-level building at 47 N. Saginaw Street.

Proprietors stood together in a mass of smiles and positive energy in the midst of a Downtown that is growing all around them – growing because of them.

Jay Burgher of Mad Cow Custom Leather, opening at 87 N. Saginaw, took a turn at the podium. “Selecting a location for a business takes a lot of thought. SCOTT WRIGHT AD basic tallDeciding to move to Downtown Pontiac was a decision to be part of a greater community,” Burgher said.

Among the newest entities in that greater community are a performing arts theater and lofts at 47 N. Saginaw developed by K and R Studios; Mad Cow Custom Leather, a craft leather retail, design and manufacturing shop; The Menagerie, a culinary incubator kitchen; Alley Cat Café, a coffee shop; Genesis Coney & Grill; Chi Ci and the Greek, 5th Avenue Design, and Max Out Fitness.

The celebration, which took place Aug. 7, helped get the community warmed up for the Dream Cruise and the three day Thunder in Pontiac event. Officials also encouraged visitors to check out two walking tours for the Downtown: Canvas Pontiac which as 25 art installations around town and the Automotive History sidebar016growtour featuring 27 signs sharing stories of Pontiac’s vehicle-centered past.

Looking to the future, the Downtown Business Association, The City of Pontiac and Oakland County are all working together on the economic redevelopment of the city. DBA President Glen Konopaskie talked about the freeze on lending and how that stunted small business growth. “We worked with Andy Meisner go get banks to open up lending,” Konopaskie said. “It’s been a tremendous aid to have someone with as much heart and vigor as Andy to go after them and start lending up for the city.”

Meisner said there has been about $50 million invested in Downtown Pontiac since 2011. “Small business drives job creation and investment. These new small ctechadbusinesses in Pontiac, the heart of Oakland County, are driving the city’s comeback,” he said. “That’s why small business lending is so critical.”

The Oakland County Sheriff’s Department also joined in the celebrating. Meisner thanked the officers present and stated “They have reduced response time so they are right on par with other parts of Oakland County, so that businesses come into the Downtown, patrons come into the Downtown, thanks to the County Sheriff and his very capable team they can know they are going to be safe as they enjoy their going out or shopping, so let’s hear it for these guys.”

To learn more about Downtown Pontiac go to http://www.pontiacdba.com/.

To learn more about the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office and the services they offer visit https://www.oakgov.com/treasurer.

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