DENVER (CBS4)– Businesses may not be booming but they’re headed in the right direction. Small business filings are up from this time last year in the Denver metro area and consumers seem more willing to spend.

Denver’s Office of Economic Development said 70 percent of the economy is supported by consumerism.

DiFranco’s Restaurant opened this week in downtown Denver on Lincoln Avenue between 9th and 10th Streets.

Ryan DiFranco learned how to cook from his family. His passion stirred when the doors to his new restaurant opened.

“It’s my grandfather, great grandmother,” DiFranco recalls as he explains his inspiration behind his restaurant. “Fresh, local, Italian.”

It’s one of many new businesses heating up Denver’s economy.

“This is the future location of Drip at the Beauvallon,” said Drip Manager Kris Doehse. “This area right here gets a lot of traffic, people cruising by.”

Drip will be a full service espresso bar also located on Lincoln between 9th and 10th.

Denver’s Office of Economic Development said new business filings have increased seven percent from last year. The city’s sales tax collection is also up five percent.

“Our job growth numbers are strong,” said Exec. Director of the Office of Economic Development Paul Washington.

The employee base in Denver has also jumped, with two new employees per Denver firm. Those jobs give consumers confidence.

“More confidence to spend, buy cars or that new suit or shirt that you’ve been eyeing,” said Washington.

“Every now and then you get nervous, scared. I still don’t know how I feel as I’m opening the doors but I feel if you serve great food, have great service and a neat atmosphere, why not? You have to go with what feels right,” said DiFranco.

Businesses are also conscious about supporting the local economy. DiFranco’s uses 22 local vendors to make the food they serve.


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