By Khadijah Forrest

Springfield, MO – “Missouri State’s presence here in downtown and then growing into the ideal commons really brought a lot of investor confidence to this area has been a key,” said Rusty Worley, Executive Director of Downtown Springfield Association. Downtown Springfield has seen a rapid growth of business in the last few years. Officials have said being close to a college campus factors into why investors are interested in downtown property.

Recently four new buildings have opened in the downtown area. One project, the HEERS building is currently being renovated after 15 years of vacancy.

With recent loft developments, downtown Springfield houses three universities of students and home to over 1,000 residents.

“We have sky eleven which is the old Woodruff building that’s been renovated for student housing and then the Sterling. It was opened up as Springfield’s first micro lofts and half around investment on Park Central East,” said Worley.

Some students believe that living downtown instead of on campus has its advantages.

“I think that it’s a pretty good investment for the developers as far as bringing in students because downtown especially on the weekend is a big hit for students,” said DaLila Blaney, Sky Eleven resident.

Officials also said that people can see growth of job opportunities due to sales tax rates increasing by eight to ten percent.