The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Annual Report: Business & Industry

March 29, 2010

Madison County weathers 2009 recession, closes few businesses

Elwood, Alex see influx of new business

ANDERSON — Though 2009’s economic recession provided a hostile climate for new businesses, a few managed to open their doors across Madison County, beating the odds in a time when it seemed the only thing harder to do than keeping your home was keeping your business open.

Elwood’s director of economic development Bill Savage said the town saw several businesses open, including a few in the town’s recently economically stagnant downtown district.

The new openings include Village Furniture in the old Gleason building and Circle Pizza. “Our downtown is revitalized with the pizza place,” Savage said.

Just off the main strip downtown, the Madison County Community Health Center built a new clinic, providing Elwood area residents improved care and extra health options, including dental services.

Also downtown, the CVS drug store expanded its operation from 9,000 square-feet to over 13,000 square-feet, he said. The store also built a drive-thru and expanded its parking lot.

The Elwood Plaza saw the opening of the El Poblano Mexican Restaurant, Savage said, while Casey’s General Store erected a new building on the city’s under-served west side.

Two new sports bars, the Red Brick Saloon and the First Down Sports Lounge also opened in 2009, helping somewhat the relieve the sting of losing on of Elwood’s most popular pubs, Wolf’s Tavern.

Wolf’s Tavern closed, Savage said, not because of the economy, but because the aging owners could no longer run the business.

The tavern will be missed, he said. “That was an institution. That was kind of like a historic landmark.”

The year was not as kind to one of Madison County’s most prominent business districts.

The hits kept coming for Pendleton’s downtown district, which has been losing its storefronts consistently over the past two years.

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Annual Report: Business & Industry
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