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Downtown getting it's groove back with new business investments

This new Downtown movie theatre is evidence that investors believe the area is gaining popularity. 11/17/16 (Faith Jessie | KSNV)

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Downtown booming, LIP - clip

If you walk downtown near 4th St. and Bonneville, you'll spot Greens and Proteins. It's a relatively new location of the popular chain restaurant and it's among many new businesses moving into downtown, a sign that the area is gaining popularity.

Jerome Harry and Ryan Brown help to open Classic Jewel" in Downtown Las Vegas a year ago. The area's appeal wasn't always the best.

"Coming into this, it was like have you ever done this before, how is it going to be downtown and everybody was scared downtown," said Harry.

Now, the family-owned business, that puts pride in its "cheers" like bar atmosphere is thriving.

"They know what you drink, they know your name, they know how your day was when you came home from work," said Brown.

Classic Jewel, located inside the Promenade at Juhl, is one of the several businesses celebrating a big grand opening of new shops and restaurants at the base of the building.

One of the men behind it, Uri Vaknin says it did take some work to pull this all together.

"One, we had to convince retailers to come to Downtown we had to convince them that this is a viable market," said Vaknin

Vaknin says, new and existing investments into downtown such as Tony Hsieh's $350 million Downtown project, as well as road improvements and the addition of bike lanes and bike sharing program, make the area more appealing to investors. It's also a goal of the city's master plan.

"The city fathers and mothers this year passed a Master plan for economic development for the next 30 years going through 2045," said Stephen Miller, UNLV Economics Professor.

Miller says the plan also includes what he considers the biggest necessity; housing.

"In the near past it was a good place to visit but not such a good place to live and work," said Miller.

"The more people you have living here and the more feet on the ground then the restaurants will come, then the bars will come," said Vaknin.

For Class Jewel, more people means more business. It's something they are already prepping for with a new expansion to the business starting Monday.

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