PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Some Pascagoula small business owners are hoping to be the start a big wave of economic investment on the southern end of Market Street. The owners of Total Fitness were a little nervous about starting a brand new business, so the success of the gym has lifted a weight off their shoulders.
"We anticipated a certain number just to be able to pay the bills," said Terry Scott, owner. "We were a little nervous as a new business starting out, but the response has been overwhelming."
The gym is not the only new enterprise on Market Street's southern end. It is also the new home of Ricky Langley's barber shop and there is a new coffee house as well. Business owners said commercial growth and investment that has been slow going since Katrina is ready to take off.
"I think it's going to be great. It's got to. It's just so nice of an area," said Langley of Hot Rods Barber Shop. "The people are really nice here. Very nice people. I think with the gym and now the barber shop and Walmart, I think Market Street is going to do well in the next five years."
"The south end of Market Street is starting to pick up with businesses," Scott said, "We love to see Pascagoula grow bigger and better than what it is. It's been a big recovery since the storm. A lot of people have come back. We've had people leave, but we have businesses coming back as well."
Business owners said coming back strong doesn't stop at Market street. They want to help promote small business throughout Pascagoula.
Scott said, "We actually decorate the gym with local businesses and they can promote their businesses on these two by two metal signs that look nice. The more we promote Pascagoula the better."
Business owners said they think the heavy traffic flow on Market Street is an asset that will help attract new businesses.