Can Downtown Bay City Support 3 New Eateries? 12-29-2010 - WNEM TV 5

Can Downtown Bay City Support 3 New Eateries? 12-29-2010

Three new restaurants hope there’s enough “dough” to go around when it comes to people eating out.
World Café, 201 Center, opened in early December; Latitude 43 Grill & Bar, 1013 N. Henry, opened its doors last week to customers; and on Thursday, Heather’s, will become the city’s first vegan-based restaurant.
All three eateries are gambling that they’ll buck a nationwide downtrend. According to the Los Angeles Times, the restaurant business was down 1 percent compared to 2009.
Diana Hadad, owner of World Café, told WNEM TV5 she knows the recipe for success in these tough economic times.
"Our menu is expansive, but it’s affordable,” said Hadad. “And the fact that we are different is our point in the market.”
Hadad said her restaurant offers locally brewed beer and an international menu that others do not.
But what do people in Bay City think? Can all three of these restaurants do what it takes to survive?
"The way this economy is going, it's hard to tell," said Bay City resident Nick Laskowski. "We've seen them open, we've seen them close."
One thing all new restaurant owners will be glad to know is that, even though business has declined at restaurants nationally, the drop has slowed from the worst years of the recession.
And, according to national figures, 24 percent of restaurant traffic over the last two years has been from customers who took advantage of coupons and other deals.
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