One final article on our area in transition. Perhaps one of the most dramatic examples of a city in transition is Ruston, Louisiana. With a number of new restaurants and the addition of a new retail area including a theatre and now another new shopping center with large box retailers. In addition Louisiana Tech continues to expand its facilities and add new technology educational opportunities. This once sleepy town has become the “poster child” for cities in positive transition.
Monroe and West Monroe are both experiencing transitions of their own. With the future completion of Arkansas Road in West Monroe it will become the highly traveled corridor much like Whites Ferry Road did a few years ago. Sunshine Heights Shopping Center at Cypress Street and Warren Drive has under construction a new addition. This will include an Urgent Care Clinic plus additional tenant space.
Monroe will soon have a new national retailer in the renovated Twin City Mall. Ollie’s Bargain Outlet, a national retailer with over 300 stores will open its 28,000 sf general merchandise store next to the Piccadilly Cafeteria. I visited one of their stores this weekend and was both surprised and impressed. The store was large, uncluttered and had recognized brands at great prices. I saw everything from Generators to men’s and women’s wear and almost everything in-between. A truly unique store that I predict will do well in this area.
I recently reported more than 30 restaurants opened in the Monroe – West Monroe area in the past 12-15 months. This has created a lot of turbulence in the local restaurant businesses.. Several restaurants have closed such as Iron Cactus in Downtown Monroe, Nonna’s in Monroe’s Garden District and Maui Taco in the former Chef Eric’s Restaurant next to the Theatre on Blanchard Street, West Monroe.
ON THE LOCAL SCENE
BIG STUFF STORAGE 711 N. 11TH Street West Monroe, a 285 unit mini Storage facility has sold for $870,000. The 285 units sold for $3,052 per unit.
A NEWLY CONSTRUCTED OFFICE BUILDING at 647 Commercial Parkway West Monroe has sold for $350,000. The building includes a 30’ x 30’ garage in the back. The heated area was 2,375 sf and sold for $147 p/sf.
***PUBLISHED in the Ouachita Citizen on February 14, 2019***