Data shows momentum is building for investing in downtown renovations

Renovations on 115 E. Main

Data from Main Street Ottumwa suggests people are investing in downtown renovations.

Nearly $10 million has been invested into downtown buildings over the past decade. About a quarter of that money was used to revamp old buildings in the last year. 228 E. Second Street houses Melissa Barker Photography and Shape Up Ottumwa. These business owners both took a measure of risk putting money into refurbishing their spaces.

â??There are literally dozens of business owners in downtown Ottumwa that are making this place a better looking place and a functional place, adding businesses and housing, but also you need to look at the pace of that,â?? Bob Untiedt, executive director of MSO said. â??Nearly a quarter of that investment, almost $2.2 million occurred last year.â??

The owner of the Stitch Doctor in Ottumwa is moving her business to the Old Main Street Ottumwa facility. Sheâ??s invested tens-of-thousands of dollars into the building on 115 E. Main. Itâ??s expected to open next month.