Downtown Indio may soon become the valley's newest cultural hub. The City is incentivizing local businesses to open in the downtown area.
Some known local favorites like Desert Beer Co. and Gabinos Creperie will open up a location in downtown Indio, along with some new businesses like the music venue Little Street Music Hall, owned by Josiah Gonzalez.
"You're gonna see the City explode. It's a very unique and vibrant place," said Gonzalez. "They took a chance on somebody local, which I think is really unique... "Indio opened their doors to us, and they told us explicitly that they wanted music and that they were going to help us, and they've done that from day one."
The City has collaborated with local businesses to help bring their visions to life, working to bring something for everyone.
"The City owning all of those properties is really the biggest incentive that they were able to use for most of the businesses. They were able to say, like, what can we do, and then they kind of custom-built the plans for each of the businesses that you see moving in," said Gonzalez.
Councilmember Elaine Holmes has met with some new businesses planning to move in.
"Everybody here that so far in this in the greater downtown area, they have a local component. They love their City, and you can't beat that," said Holmes. "We're embracing our business community in every way that we can. We want to help them be successful."
The City has an area called "The Opportunity Zone," which includes downtown. Within the zone, the City offers deferred and reduced taxes and, in some cases, up to 10 years. Also, a beautification program gives businesses up to $50,000 to remodel.
"This building, this venue, is like the first step for us in really wanting to develop a thriving cultural scene," said Gonzalez.
According to Holmes, some businesses will open their doors within the next few months.
Local businesses interested in opening shop in Indio can contact the City's economic development manager Miguel Ramierez-Cornejo at (760) 391-4068.
The City of Indio's Economic Development Work Plan goals include:
- Revitalize Highway 111 and Downtown
- Create an ecosystem for entrepreneurship and innovation
- Diversify the City's business and employment base and create a variety of job types for residents
- Increase the City's property tax, sales tax, and transient occupancy tax revenues
- Create a strategy for remaining available land to ensure the best land use for Indio's future