Fire Cup Coffee was a bright star of hope along declining Denton Highway corridor
HALTOM CITY, TX, September 30, 2022 /24-7PressRelease/ — Recently, Fire Cup Coffee, a business that opened not long ago on Denton Highway in Haltom City announced it was closing. There was speculation in a Facebook post that perhaps the demographics weren’t just right, and that they were regrouping and hope to come back.
The city and many Haltom City residents had welcomed Fire Cup Coffee with open arms as the coffee shop was a bright spot in a blighted corridor within a block of where CVS recently closed an underperforming drugstore, and just a few blocks from where Kroger closed its grocery store a few years ago.
Joe Palmer, Director of Communications for Haltom United Business Alliance, stated, “I am sorry to see Fire Cup Coffee go because Haltom City badly needs more pioneering entrepreneurs to open businesses along Denton Highway, Belknap, and other main corridors in the south and central parts of the city.”
“It’s hard when you’re one of the first to open in an area where traffic has been declining for decades and there are lots of empty buildings. We need more investment, more innovators and more people willing to bring products and services to these corridors,” added Palmer.
Unfortunately, Palmer said, as the business alliance has been saying for over a year, the city’s codes and zoning use matrix make it very hard to open a new business in Haltom City.
Ron Sturgeon, one of the founders of the business alliance, speaks with business people wanting to open new businesses almost weekly. Sturgeon says many entrepreneurs go to nearby cities to start businesses because Haltom City’s requirements are so onerous. He adds, “Our city leaders don’t understand the machinations of business ownership, and though hundreds of millions of dollars are needed in the main corridors of the declining southern and central city, they aren’t incenting that investment, and, in fact, are doing the opposite, discouraging landlords and future tenants. Our current city leaders seem to think they should attract only the perfect businesses, only the ones they see as desirable, excluding all others, from snow cone stands to a day care center, both of which were recently turned away.”
In addition, members of the current Haltom City Council and the zoning department continue to state that they are hoping for more retail to fill the spaces along these corridors. “Retail is declining because of new buying habits, a major trend that was only accelerated by Covid,” says Sturgeon. Placing hope in retail to bring the corridors back is a mistake, he said.
The business alliance has put forward a plan to create special zones in the areas that need to be revitalized and hired a third-party to do a set of studies of economic development and gave the city recommendations to attract more small businesses.
“So far, HUBA’s efforts to help Haltom City have been completely ignored by current city leaders,” said Sturgeon. The current council is focused on new developments on the north side of town, said Sturgeon.
“City leaders should also work on restoring the older south and central parts of the city at the same time,” Sturgeon said. HUBA has offered the city a concept plan to revitalize the southern central parts of the city, bringing back commerce and traffic so that businesses can thrive and offer residents products and services and job opportunities.
Palmer adds “None of the current council lives in the declining southern and central parts of the city or has ever owned a business. We hope that new candidates will present themselves who are pro-business as well as pro-Haltom City. Sturgeon asks that those interested in running for council or mayor contact him directly.
About Haltom City
Haltom City is a medium-sized city between Dallas and Fort Worth in Tarrant County, TX. The city is diverse and majority working class, with a growing population that is approximately 10% Asian-American and 45% Hispanic. Haltom City benefits from being only minutes from both DFW Airport and Downtown Fort Worth, with direct access to major highways including I-820 and SH-121. Small businesses that have historically provided products, services, and jobs to residents included a once thriving automotive industry. The city has seen a decline in small businesses, especially automotive businesses. The city is healthy financially, with median household income growing around 8% in the past year. Haltom City has an opportunity for continued growth through undeveloped land and many vacant buildings, especially in major corridors close to the city’s center. The city has good staff and a city manager who is interested in seeing more businesses come to Haltom City, but they can only do as directed by City Council.
About Haltom United Business Alliance
Haltom United Business Alliance (HUBA) wants to give members of Haltom City’s business community an advocate and to keep those businesses informed about issues that affect them. They want to make sure Haltom City is business friendly and nurtures small business growth, including automotive businesses, and bring more restaurants including breweries and a major grocery store to the city. New businesses and growth in existing businesses will create a stronger tax base which will allow the city to pay its first responders wages that are competitive with surrounding cities while improving Haltom City’s facilities and infrastructure. HUBA believes that the southern and central parts of the city need a revitalization plan, to prevent further degradation in those areas, and wants that to happen before the inner-city experiences increased crime and more blight. As retail and office uses are in decline, its more critical than ever to attract new businesses. They believe that such a plan requires a strong relationship and support of the business community. Anyone who owns a business in Haltom City is eligible to join HUBA. Dues are $20 annually or $50 for a lifetime membership, and membership is 100% confidential. To join, contact Joe Palmer at (682) 310-0591 or by email at [email protected]. Visit the group’s Facebook at Haltom United Business Alliance.
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