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Downtown Maryville business leaders excited for new development

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) – Downtown development is wanted and needed by business owners in Maryville.

“I feel like downtown now is starting to come around,” Roost owner Paula Osborn said, “I’m tired of seeing, you know, store fronts that are closed up and things that aren’t beautiful and I think people are kind of put off by that.”

When Osborn opened her shop, Roost, nine years ago she hoped downtown revitalization would come. There’s free parking and developers making plans for a few more spaces on Broadway Avenue and Ellis Avenue.

“I’ve loved every minute, but it does require, effort for people to come down. There’s not aa lot going on down here. We’re so excited for anything to happen that would give us a little more vibrance down here,” Osborn explained.

When Bluetick Tavern opened in 2013 it took over a record shop that hadn’t been used in years.

“Being in downtown Maryville is the best place in the world for this restaurant,” Bluetick owner Randy Burleson, said, “It’s great to have an urban walking environment. And it’s fun to pop in here and pop in across the street.”

Burleson’s the founder of Aubrey’s and other popular restaurant concepts in East Tennessee.

He believes if there’s more business, there’s more foot traffic.

“It’s one of those competition, some people think it’s a bad thing. It actually brings more people downtown and therefore everybody gets a little bit bigger part of a bigger pie,” Burleson said.

WVLT will be talking with city leaders next week to learn more about the plan for these businesses.

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