Niagara Gazette — Grandpaws Pet Emporium is on the move.
The Center Street business is set to take over the vacant shop space at 402 Center St., next to The Brickyard, beginning July 2.
"There's more activity down there," co-owner Andrew Bell said Monday. "We get left out of most of the things (in the present location of 784 Center St.) where we are. All the festivals are down there, so none of the foot traffic comes our way. We end up losing a lot of business."
Aside from a less than ordeal location, which opened May 1, 2012, after moving from Youngstown, Bell said he's also had to deal with uncertainty from the recent purchase of the current store's land and building by Ellicott Development, owned by Carl Paladino.
He said the situation, though less than ideal, hasn't been rough. But he knew the opportunity to move would need to be seized as plans for developing the north side of Center Street along Eighth Street progress slowly in various planning sessions.
"We don't know exactly what's happening (at 784 Center St.)," Bell said. "Everyone's been reasonable about it so far, but it's the unknown that concerns me."
Specializing in everything from natural food options for a number of animals to locally made toys and house products relating to pets, Grandpaws Pet Emporium allows humans and their four-legged owners shop together.
So the space, he said, needs to be bigger. The new location is, he said, and there are already plans in the works to hold many outdoor, pet-friendly events along with it. He said he's even planning on operating the ice cream shoppe already there for his human guests.
It's all about revitalizing a small section of an otherwise busy section of Center Street that's been fairly dormant despite the bustling businesses surrounding the pavilion area.
"I really think we can bring that spot back to life," he said. "It's been a bit quiet for the past few years."Contact reporter Timothy Chipp at 282-2311, ext. 2251 or follow on Twitter @timchipp.