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How often do you spend your dollars at Stapleton businesses?

Wednesday, July 22, 2009 Leave a Comment

There are several things that make Stapleton one of the country's best models of new urbanism, several things that attracted me to live here. One is the promise of a tight yet diverse community, with schools, shopping, and recreation all within walking distance (or with easy public transportation) -- the best part of living in any urban city neighborhood.

Living in Eastbridge, one promise of Stapleton that hasn't come to fruition yet is the ability to walk to our goods and services. I can't walk to pick up a carton of milk when we're out, or walk to get a coffee in the morning. I won't even be able to walk my kid to preschool, but that's another story.

Yes, there's a second town center planned, but no solid plans for who will occupy it yet -- although they've broken ground for something, the gas station, I think.

I've been spending quite a bit of time in the Town Center lately, something I hadn't done in my two years here, and am pleasantly surprised at the businesses there. It makes me wonder, are we as a community really supporting the businesses right here? Remember South Enders, the coffee shop near Bill Roberts, that lasted less than a year?

This question is important because these businesses embedded in our community are one of the hallmarks of new urbanism. Without them, the promise isn't fulfilled. Those of us who bought houses near the second town center can see the effect those vacant fields have on our home values. If we can't support one town center, how will we support two of them?

When we bought our house, there was approximately $400 in our closing costs that were allocated to Forest City marketing. I assume all homeowners in Stapleton pay something similar. What do those dollars go to? Forest City runs a pretty smart marketing campaign to attract new residents, but do they also support the businesses that pay top dollar to be in our town center and surrounding areas? Again, many of these businesses are owned by Stapleton residents. The Front Porch newspaper is one of their marketing vehicles, and they do a great job of profiling new businesses, like Cafe of Life, but the advertising isn't free.

How often do you spend your dollars at the Town Center?


  • The Bee Keeper said:  

    Nice blog! We spend some money at the Town Center, an occassional Starbucks when we are out of coffee or a bagel. We ate at Udi's one morning during the Sweet William Market. Most recently we discovered The Berkshire which has GREAT burgers and fries. Nice for take out when you are caught without dinner stuff. We get our prescriptions filled at Walgreen's. We do not shop at King Sooper's - would love to see another grocery store here in Stapleton.

  • Anonymous said:  

    I live near Fulton and MLK...can't wait for the new town center. I PROMISE I will spend lots of money on whoever is willing to put a business in.
    In addition to being frequent guests at The Birkshire, Einstein's and Anthony's, my husband and I use a physician in Stapleton and take our daughter to Stapleton Pediatrics.
    I'd love to see the flower store add some hours, because I'd do business with them if they were ever open when I want to buy from them -- ie: Monday mornings when I want flowers for my desk, etc.
    We walk our daughter to school at Knowledge Beginnings (a wonderful school).
    We are doing our part and hope everyone else will, too!

  • Anonymous said:  

    Udi's for treat lunches - fabulous food, nicely close by, great (Stapleton) people. Starbucks for getting out of home office and grabbing a coffee on the go. King Soops for regular groceries. Flower store. Chipotle and Noodles - take the kids out to dinner. Stapleton Pediatrics. Newly go to the vet. Biking to the (current) Town Center is doable from anywhere in Stapleton!

  • Gordon Weakliem said:  

    We spend quite a bit between the town center, Quebec Square, and Northfield - probably 80% of our shopping goes on in one of those 3 places.
    I heard that SouthEnder's really had a management problem - they got way too far into debt opening the place up (especially the liquor license). FC claims they subsidize leases on some of the stores as well. However, I've also heard that FC is a nightmare to work with - people I know who've either closed businesses or given up trying to open them in the town center or Quebec Square - high rents, poor signage, poor access... it's not an ideal situation for a small business.