EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)- After years of what Evansville City Councilman Zac Heronemus (D-3rd Ward) called “neglect,” Evansville’s Jacobsville neighborhood is experiencing a regrowth with new businesses along N. Main Street.
Gayla Bell has operated GaylaCake out of several Jacobsville storefronts over the past nine years and says her fellow business owners are “working to break that string of poverty” within the neighborhood. That, Bell hopes, will help change Jacobsville’s reputation in the city. Bell cited the revamped N. Main Street and the community spirit, saying that the people who still believe in Jacobsville’s old reputation “haven’t been here.”
Now, months after an initial $25,000 investment into the Jacobsville Advantage program, Fifth Third Bank is reinvesting another $15,000 into the initiative powered by University of Evansville students to provide marketing and advertising help to Jacobsville businesses.
Bank official John Raisor says the neighborhood has a lot to offer for businesses and tourists, both from historic venues like Bosse Field and from newer investments like the Deaconess Aquatic Center. Raisor says Jacobsville could be the “next hot area” in Evansville.
Bell says the investment and the program are “putting community over profit,” saying that the continued investment will bring new people to the neighborhood and help them continue the area’s turnaround.