Hours after officials cut the ribbon on Orlando City Soccer Club’s new stadium last week, business was steady at J. Henry’s Barber Shop across Church Street.
Wearing an Orlando City cap and shirt as he worked, the shop’s namesake boasted of the construction workers he’s turned into regular customers. He’s hoping to find more clients among the game day crowds.
“Before that stadium was built, that was a vacant lot over there and a retention pond,” J. Henry said. “Change is always good. You just have to embrace the change.”
As Orlando City Stadium readies for its first game this weekend, hopes are high in Parramore that the new venue will help the west Orlando neighborhood that has been the target of city renewal efforts for decades.
But experts and city officials caution that, while throngs of purple-clad revelers may provide an economic boost, Parramore’s fortunes won’t change overnight.
Development of the surrounding area likely will progress slowly, said Dean Grandin, the city’s top planner.
To read the full article, click here.