Thursday, July 24, 2008

Downtown Comings and Goings: Good, bad, and indifferent

I've been meaning to do a post about some of the businesses opening and closing downtown, and in a piece of good timing, the Downtown Davenport Partnership recently updated their website covering some of the same things. I had planned to get some pictures of a few of these things, but those will have to wait for a separate post. I've divided the comings and goings into what I personally consider to be good, bad, and indifferent events for downtown.


Azteca - Azteca is opening what I believe is their 4th location in what is currently ScatterKats. Finally some Mexican food downtown! ScatterKats really turned out to be a disapoinment compared to the "upscale" New Orleans-themed bar and restaurant it was originally opened as. I think I hear even more police calls to there than Shenanigans. They may not be closing the bar completely though, so we'll see how that works out.

Dillon Fountain - After being in disrepair for years, the Dillon fountain is back in action. Bill Wundram must be thrilled, as he's been complaining about it for years as well.

Riverview Terrace Apartments - Apparently the "RiverView Lofts" are now the Riverview Terrace Apartments. Despite being 100% medium-income, they should give a boost to that end of downtown. As always, it depends on the management.

Snap Fitness - The first piece of the redevelopment of the Putnam and Parker buildings is a 24/7 fitness center. I'm not sure if E Squared Fitness is still in the Executive Square building, but if it is, hopefully downtown can support two fitness places.

Skatepark Pavilion - The structure is together for the multipurpose building being erected next to the skatepark, and the surrounding area's earthworks are progressing as well. This can only help what is already the most popular amenity Davenport has built in years.

The Freight House - All 4 venues are now open, including the Ripley Street Grille. I have yet to check the place out, but from the pictures all the places look great.


Starbucks - I don't drink coffee, and could care less about Starbucks closing their downtown location, but I did feel that it lent an air of corporate confidence in our downtown. That said, I think its closing says more about over-saturation of coffee shops downtown and their own business model than the health of downtown Davenport. I almost included this in "Indifferent."

LP Studios - The closing of the Living Passion Studio and Coffee Shop at 2nd and Iowa is a greater loss for downtown than Starbucks. It was a unique place where you could get a coffee and watch them work on the backdrops for their productions as well.

Still missing - A new Figge restaurant, a replacement for Savitris, and of course, casino progress.


Sippi's - This has been discussed at length, but I'm leaving it in the indifferent category. I will say that the building looks better than I was afraid it was going to, but it was a fight to get it that far. The council passed design guidelines, so people shouldn't be surprised when they come into play.

Salon Luce - The "Mentality" hair salon in the Executive Square building was replaced by "Salon Luce." Ok.

Hilltop Hair Variety Shop & Neat Stuff - A couple junk shops move down the hill into downtown. I suppose having entrepreneurs selling a mixture of items is better than a vacant storefront. Seems like they could have changed the Hilltop name at least.

Check out the Downtown Partnership's page about current downtown projects.


Matt said...

thanks for the link; i know now there's a new record store in the area, and that makes me giddy.

Pho3niX said...

Ditto. Thanks QCI!

(I wonder if they'll buy my "Chipmunk Punk" album?!?)

Pho3niX said...
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Anonymous said...

Is Theo's Java Hut still downtown?

Anonymous said...

We went to eat at "Ripley Street Grill" last Saturday and to "Sippi's" last night. Both places were "fancier" than I thought they would be, but both places had a wide variety of choices, so you could spend a little or a lot. We truly enjoyed the food at both places and plan to return to both.

I was no fan of the addition that was “stuck” onto the original building at "Sippi's", but was pleasantly surprised at the inside of the original building. It was a lot nicer than I was expecting. We ate on the patio outside and the only complaint would be the damn motorcycles going down the street with, I swear, no mufflers. Oh well, life in the urban jungle.

Anyway, give both places a try. I don’t live anywhere near downtown, but will be back to both places and I also will be at Aztecas when they open downtown. That is our favorite Mexican restaurant.

Anonymous said...

I am also in the same boat with the two other posters on here when I say I'm the most exited about a legit Record Store in downtown!

If I'm not mistaken, it will be the only real vinyl store in the entire Quad-Cities. Sweet.

Anonymous said...

To answer the previous poster, Theo's has been gone for several years now; however, Urban Grind is now located in that space and is an excellent addition to dowtnown.

They've got incredible food at good prices for the quality you get. Also, Theo's does still exist in The District of Rock Island.

Matt said...

Mixtapes (downtown East Moline) is the only current other record store i know of. If I have it correctly, they are the same people that had the record store up on 23rd Ave, near the Red Wing Shoe store, a while back. The old store (23rd ave) sold a lot of the obscure punk rock I listen to, even things from overseas like Seein' Red, but I'm not sure what Mixtapes has in its inventory. No matter what this new downtown Davenport place sells, I'm sure I'll be patronizing. Whether old The Police records I like to collect or new punk rock that only comes on vinyl, I'm game.

shot in the arm said...

I'm also bummed LP studios closed. They had a good selection of drinks and a great spot with ease of they were right off the Arsenal Bridge.

Anonymous said...

I loved going to LP studios... were they just not generating cash flow? Probably a victim of being the 'discretionary income' category. Any word on another coffee shop going in there?

QuadCityImages said...

I think they may have had water damage during the flood, but I could be wrong. If I'm remembering correctly, we saw them dragging wet carpeting out the door. Again, I have no idea if that contributed to anything, and really have no info on why they closed. Their website doesn't mention it either.