Local News

New businesses breathing fresh life into downtown Smithfield

Posted June 9

— The Town of Smithfield has been working to recover from Hurricane Matthew since the storm rolled through North Carolina last fall.

Businesses that have opened near downtown are breathing new life into historic parts of Smithfield. Four new businesses have opened in the last four months, and more are on the way.

"I think this street right here, 3rd Street, is beginning to look like Salem Street in Apex," Jud Patterson said. "Where it's just cool shop after cool shop. And we are trying to add to that."

Patterson is putting the final touches on The Oak City Collective, a business he's had for several years. The shop offers everything from hats and T-shirts to locally made artwork.

Meanwhile, just down the road, Simple Twist Tap Room opened just last month. The manager says the early response has been great.

"So far, everyone loves it. Everyone says, 'It's another place downtown for people to go to,'" Simple Twist bartender Drew Sandoval said. "And that's one thing everyone has been looking for."

Sarah Edwards, who is with the Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation, says there is more interest on the horizon.

"Over the last three years, we've seen a change in the businesses that are coming, and it's really been great to see and the community has definitely supported it," Edwards said.

With Smithfield's close proximity to Raleigh, fairly low cost of living and easy access to major local highways, Edwards says her group is excited to see the town continue to blossom.

"The success of others definitely attracts others who want to be a part of it," she said.
"And we want to be a part of Smithfield going forth, and really making a difference in our community."

Edwards says the area is lacking one thing – clothing retailers.

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  • Sarah Edwards Jun 9, 6:24 p.m.
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    The Downtown Smithfield Development Corporation offers a variety of incentives to assist new businesses! Interested in filling the void and opening a clothing boutique or another retail shop or restaurant? We have a grant that offers upfit assistance or a rent subsidy. Learn more at http://downtownsmithfield.com/index.php/incentive-programs/downtown-smithfield-r2-rush.