Downtown works to rebound from virus and vandalism

Assistance for distressed businesses
Posted at 6:33 PM, Jun 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-04 21:46:54-04

TUCSON, Ariz. - Downtown Tucson was already staggering from the economic damage of the coronavirus restrictions. Then, the damage started.

Friday, as some marched downtown to make a point about police brutality towards black people others made a point of damaging anything they could. That included about $10,000 worth of glass at Chic Boutique and Spa.

“I was actually notified by one of my clients who lives across the street, and then a renter texted me and asked if we were okay we got down here, and our windows were shattered glass was edged," said owner Stacy Madigan. "It was like Ground Zero dumpsters on fire people screaming and kicking in Windows.”

That physical damage piles onto the financial damage of several weeks of shutdown because of Coronavirus restrictions. Madigan said she hit a frustrating maze of assistance programs for the virus impact. Now she’s working to make sure customers know she is open and setting high standards for sanitation.

The physical damage adds another layer of trouble for downtown to push through. The Rio Nuevo downtown development district has a program to help downtown businesses pay for their glass repairs.

The Downtown Tucson Partnership is working to help downtown businesses rebound and adapt to coronavirus safeguards customers may actually enjoy, like more outdoor seating so restaurants can apply social distancing but still serve enough customers to make a profit.

“It requires us to move very quickly in the city of Tucson has been amazing because they're relaxing all of their codes in relationship to the parking spaces and the sidewalk use," Partnership CEO, Kathleen Eriksen, said. "So you'll be seeing a lot more cafes and downtown social distancing will definitely be adhered to.”

And the Downtown Tucson Partnership is working to help businesses abide by the Coronavirus changes and do some marketing to draw customers back downtown.