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Once Bustling Business Area Now Quiet | News

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Once Bustling Business Area Now Quiet
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Those foreclosed signs that once littered front yards throughout the valley are quickly being replaced by for lease banners on empty storefronts all over town. One area hit particularly hard by the recession are the shopping centers located at Sahara and Decatur.

"A lot of the big businesses have been going under -- stores that had been around a long time," said Las Vegan David Das.

Das works and shops in the once busy commercial center at Sahara and Decatur. His customers comment all the time on the growing number of store closures in the area. "They say this place is like a desert. This used to be a central shopping point in the city and now there's barely anything over here," he said.

Several nearby auto dealerships, restaurants, and large corporate-owned stores have gone under in the past two years, including Sports Authority, Circuit City, and Pier One Imports.

Albert Yu's family opened a 99 Cents Store two years ago when the shopping center was still hopping. Even during the first year of the recession, Yu says business was good because his store is all about bargain hunting. But now? "We're barely surviving, barely," he said.

Yu says he's making just a few pennies of profit on most of the discounted products he sells. "There are some items I'm selling at my cost, buying it at 99 cents and selling it at 99 cents," he said.

Like many of the other business owners, Yu's family hopes to renegotiate their lease with the landlord to buy more time to survive the recession. Kimco Reality did not return calls about reducing rents by deadline.

Across the street, Becker Enterprises, which currently has a vacancy rate of about 40-percent, says they've already reduced their rents significantly to try to lure prospective businesses to the area.

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