Court Street Buildings Hang Up The ‘No Vacancy’ Sign

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Walk down Court Street in Uptown Athens and you may notice something pretty unusual: a full house.

After nearly 20 years all the storefronts on Court Street are occupied. 

Some spots, empty for nearly a decade, now have new tenants.

The old Woolworth building is now occupied by Ohio University, and the space next to CVS that used to be Burger King will soon be occupied by Ginger, a new Sushi restaurant.

Mayor Paul Wiehl says that the full lots will create a good climate in the city.

"The county is jumping up a little bit and of course it's always good to have full stores," he says. "It actually shows some of the initiative by the Uptown Business Association to fill those spots."

Work is also being done to build a new restaurant and new apartments where the old Blue Gator restaurant once stood.

Wendy Jakmas, president of the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce, points to a healthier economy as the reason for the newfound growth. 

"The economy is getting better, I'm hoping that people realize that we are really a unique community, and I hope that people are celebrating the fact that we are on the semesters system," says Jakmas.

Jakmas says the new businesses coming to Court Street will ripple through the community.

"It's going to hire people; it's going to put money into our tax base. Our tax base is going to help with our school systems and it's going to help our amenities that help with our quality of life," says Jakmas.

Besides helping the economy, Jakmas says a full Court Street will add to the beauty of Athens.