HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Holyoke is receiving a $30 million federal grant that they plan to put towards assisting and expanding Latino-owned businesses heavily impacted by the pandemic.
Holyoke Acting Mayor Terry Murphy along with the Latino Chamber of Commerce invited Latino business owners to a round-table to discuss business growth and challenges the business owners are currently facing.
Some owners expressed the need to make the city more attractive to get more foot traffic in the area, including cleaning up city streets of trash and temporarily closing off roads for large events to promote the city.
Other business owners express worries about parking for customers as well as creating crosswalks on Main and High Street.
Some restaurant owners said they need to expand outdoor dining as soon as possible to meet the summer demand.
Juan Uribe, owner of El Paraiso Colombiano told 22News, “I know everything is a process but if the summer is now, it’s going to hurt me to lose even 5 weeks of that because there are other restaurants that are doing it, right now.”
According to city officials during the meeting, an ‘active downtown committee’ is being formed to find ways to make downtown Holyoke more appealing for business.