(KCPW News) Salt Lake City is welcoming small businesses back to downtown. After years of empty storefronts, Mayor Ralph Becker will celebrate the opening of four new businesses along Main Street later this week that were all established within the last year. Salt Lake City Spokesman Art Raymond notes the city purchased the historic Utah Theater and adjoining retail space in 2009 to help revitalize Main Street.
“Obviously we want vitality downtown; we want vitality across our entire city,” he says. “Those spaces had been vacant for years so we put some money into making them retail ready and now they are occupied by these four great local businesses.”
Raymond says while the theater still remains vacant, several groups would like to see it converted into a film exhibition center.
“The Utah Film Center, Salt Lake Film Society, and Spy Hop Productions are working on a plan to possibly turn the theater building itself into a regional film center; an education space a space for housing for new digital arts production,” says Raymond.
Studies are underway to see how viable a film center would be. The historic Utah Theater is located across the street from Salt Lake City’s planned site for the Utah Performing Arts Center, a proposed Broadway-style theater.
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