Downtown Paris is thriving

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PARIS, TX - While many downtown's across the country have fallen apart over time, the center of Paris is thriving.

For 21-years the Paris main street program has helped boost the city's downtown even offering grants and incentives, supporting growth.

"Since 2007 in Paris, Texas we've had over 18 million dollars in investments in downtown." said Main Street Coordinator Cheri Bedford.

The main street program has acted to preserve the past with an eye on the present. They've kept the largest continuous set of buildings in the nation from the early 1900s and added modern amenities.

"What we want to do is kinda create that message of main street and how vitalization can bring a community together." said Bedford

One downtown business owner, Matthew Coyle, transformed an old sevice station into a fine dining restaurant. Coyle says you can be successful, even with old buildings.

"Know that it's a possibility to be a profitable business and still hold on to aspects of your past." said Coyle.

Coyle says Paris' downtown has great synergy for both locals and visitors alike.

"Like downtown living where you've got your shops, boutique hotels and your restaurants all together." said Coyle. "People can go in from both your local population and tourism."

Bedford agrees and says one business recently moved from the loop to downtown and got a nice boost in sales.

"They said it is the best move they've ever made." said Bedford. "They have great traffic and they see so many people and didn't realize how many people come through Paris that are not from Paris."

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