Chestnut Hill businesses doing ?. okay

June 22, 2009 3:38:12 PM PDT
Surpluses are rare these days. In fact, there is plenty of financial hardship to go around just ask merchants in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia. Some have been forced to close their doors. But those remaining say they're doing okay.It's something we've come accustomed to seeing since the economy has been in a downslide, empty store windows and vacant lots. You even see them in upscale Chestnut Hill but business owners say don't be fooled.

"It's a lot easier to talk about the missing store locations, the empty stores when there's a recession going on," said Adam Serfass of the Chestnut Hill Cheese Shop.

Although business has been down a bit:

"We found that from last year we're down about 6-percent," said Gregory Welsh of Chestnut Grill and Sidewalk Café.

But Welsh says compared to many restaurants in the city that are down 25 to 40-percent, 6-percent is reflective of just how well Chestnut Hill has managed to keep it's head above the water. And from the look of the crowds on the streets and in the stores, business does not appear to be suffering.

Most business owners attribute this to customer loyalty to the area and businesses working together.

"We are definitely supported by the community and the shops stay in a very close network and a lot of our customers come here on the weekends and just shop in Chestnut Hill," said Chloe Condon of Robertson's Flowers.

But what about retail stores like Chico's that have moved to other locations? And the restaurant, the Melting Pot that shut down in April?

"We have some stores that have closed up but as soon they do we have other merchants move in because it's such a desirable area."

For example behind me used to be the ford dealer the lot is empty now but Welsh says not for long. He tells Action News a 20 thousand square foot upscale market is set to move in soon.

"We're all waiting for the turn we expect for it to happen soon, just like everything else, there's cycles up and down."

Welsh says in the meantime, businesses are just thankful that their down hasn't been all that bad.

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