BALTIMORE (WJZ)–Seven months after the Freddie Gray riots, the Baltimore Development Corporation (BDC) reports 93% of businesses damaged by looters are back on their feet.
WJZ’s Pat Warren has more.
28 years in business here, and in 24 hours, trashed.
“The whole place was emptied out. My gate was open I could see all my walls, all the stuff gone,” said business owner Hye Kim.
Like other family business owners, Hye Kim was at a loss, but then the Baltimore Business Development Corporation stepped in. No waiting to be asked.
“Our number one goal after the unrest was to make certain we did everything humanly possible to ensure that those businesses reopened,” said Bill Cole, Baltimore Development Corporation.
Baltimore Development Corporation’s business recovery–funded by donations from businesses and individuals–included $206,000 in grants to repair or replace damaged storefronts, and granted loans totaling more than $660,000 with zero interest and 100% forgivable if the business stays open 2 years.
Of 400 businesses damaged, 93% have re-opened.
“The BDC came in and contacted me and showed me a list of things I could apply for – just answers to a call,” said Hye Kim.
That hand is still extended.
“We made it clear to them that this wasn’t a one and done, we’re going to continue to work with them to ensure that as they grow out of there and climb out of this hole we’re going to be there for them,’ said Cole.
The BCD says the other 7% of businesses damaged are on track to reopen.
The estimated cost of damages to businesses is $9-million.