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Pop-up to permanent in downtown Colorado Springs

Posted at 11:54 PM, Dec 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-06 07:29:58-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — “We've worked so many other jobs for other people and realized we wanted to work for ourselves and see what that was all about,” said Cox.

Hannah Cox and her sister/business partner opened their retail shop Mountain Standard Goods a year ago. The business model focuses on goods, both new and like new, sourced from the Rocky Mountain region.

“Part of our purpose in serving our business is doing more of an ethically or sustainably-minded approach because there's a lot of waste in the fashion industry,” said Cox

Ideas are fine, but trying out a business plan can be expensive. A year ago, it was especially true in the wake of the pandemic.

The business partners pursued a lower-risk way to give their retail plan a trial run.

“The Pop-up Shop was a great opportunity to try out our business and see if it was viable,” said Cox

Pop-up shops are a holiday extra promoted by the Colorado Springs Downtown Partnership. The program offers short-term leases for downtown store-fronts that would otherwise likely be empty during the holidays.

“Two months, that's the trial period. It's two months to see if it's viable,” said Cox. “We had such a warm welcome from the community. And people just kept coming in saying, 'Wow, I love your store so much.'”

For Mountain Standard Goods, the trial grew into a more permanent plan. The original space proved too large, but they continued business not quite a block away in a space with a longer-term lease.

Heading into year two, there is now inflation to consider. The Cox sisters are like many other entrepreneurs looking at the current economy. They also see the ongoing rapid growth in Colorado Springs.

“We kind of felt like it was now or never to get in. And once we did the Pop-up program, we learned that there's only 3% vacancies in our downtown area. So, we felt really lucky to get in when we did,” said Cox.

A spokesperson for the City of Colorado Springs said the city staff who track economic development continue to be as busy as ever despite inflation.
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