Downtown Selma’s success is Selma’s successPublished 3:10pm Tuesday, August 27, 2013
While we often wag our finger at the business and building owners in Selma’s historic downtown who have taken the demolition by neglect approach to their buildings, we have — at times — celebrated those who, for lack of a better phrase, are doing it right.
One such block in Selma’s downtown is doing it right in a big way, and that is the stretch of Broad Street that is home to Carter’s Drug, Allez-Oup, It’s All About Me, Teja’s and Butler Truax Jewelers.
We would have extended our applause to the block a little further south, but El Ranchero’s butchering of a city-owned Holley bush because it was in the way of their front door, pretty much ruined the mood.
But it is this block — the one anchored by Butler Truax and Carters, and also contains the beautiful Walton Theater — is one Selma should celebrate as what Selma’s downtown both could be and should be.
Each storefront is occupied and the owners — yes each successful in their own way — have shown they take pride in their buildings, their appearance and the experience their customers have when they walk in the front door.
Their business success is by no accident. They have made the investment and in many ways, it has paid off.
This particular block should be the example others in Selma should use and the standard by what other areas should be judged. There is no reason other areas of Selma could not find similar success.
There are others along Broad Street who have also done great things, both in the way their buildings appear and the shopping experience customers find when they walk in the door. Businesses like Pilcher-McBryde Drug Store and Swift Drugs come to mind.
These are long-standing and successful businesses in Selma as well, but again, it is by no accident.
As we have said many times, the overall economic vitality of a city is often judged by the success of its downtown area. Selma is no different.
This is why we are cheering so hard, praying so hard, for the continued improvement and success of the St. James Hotel. A well-run and inviting place for visitors to stay in the heart of Selma means so much.
And, dowtown events, not only bring visitors downtown, it brings thier business.
Bringing events downtown brings customers downtown, thus another reason to applaud the city of Selma and their decision to bring the Labor Day Fireworks show to the riverfront.
Other events, such as the annual Riverfront Market Day, Alabama River Chili Cookoff and the annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee bring hundreds and thousands of visitors to downtown.
If we are to continue to see our city improve, and our business climate improve, we must find ways to invest in the success of downtown, both in the way it appears and the businesses who call it home.
It is important the city of Selma, the Selma-Dallas County Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Selma Association and others — especially those who own buildings and businesses downtown —continue to make downtown a point of emphasis.