Program works to revitalize Winston-Salem businesses

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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. -- A city program to help blighted commercial properties in Winston-Salem is paying off big for some businesses.

Revitalizing Urban Commercial Areas (RUCA) is a plan that was approved by the city council several years ago. It set aside more than $2 million in matching loans and public assistance.

Winston-Salem identified five RUCA Areas eligible for help. They include the Ogburn Station, King/Parkview Plaza, West Salem/Academy Street, Peachtree/Waughtown Street and Cherry/Polo Road Areas.

FOX8 stopped by the West Salem Shopping Center, which has undergone a makeover that includes facade, sign and parking lot improvements.

A store manager at the center says the upgrades have helped bring in more customers.

“Definitely happy,” said Sherwin Williams manager Wesley Smith. “It's got a lot more retail traffic in here. Whereas before, with the rundown look, as people drive by it's not very appealing."

Winston-Salem believes providing assistance in these areas will positively impact not only surrounding neighborhoods, but the city as a whole.

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