BiS: - Business news for the creative coast.

Julia Ritchey

Business Reporter - 912-652-0362 - Email me

Petition for zoning change in Godley Station raises questions for multifamily developers

A request to allow more multifamily development in north Godley Station received a recommendation from the Metropolitan Planning Commission on Tuesday, but not before some West Chatham residents and developers weighed in with concerns.

Black Women Empowerment Expo hosted by Armstrong

About a dozen black-owned businesses filled the second-floor ballroom of Armstrong State University’s Student Union on Monday for the Black Women Empowerment Expo.

The state of Savannah's shareconomy

In the not-so-distant past, traveling on the cheap meant staying at a seedy roadside motel and deciphering cryptic bus schedules in whatever metropolis you happened to be visiting. Not anymore.

Wheels for workers: Savannah Bicycle Campaign launches mobility program

When Mohammad Wasiq moved from Kabul, Afghanistan, to Savannah with his wife and daughter four months ago, it took him nearly half an hour to walk to his job at a hotel every day.

New retailers, yoga studio coming to Broughton Street

Ben Carter Enterprises has announced a few new leases on Broughton Street as the developer continues restoration and renovation work on several of his buildings along the corridor.

Historic Savannah Foundation kicks off 60th anniversary year

The Historic Savannah Foundation is kicking off its 60th anniversary with several initiatives and projects as it continues working to save Savannah’s historical buildings from the ever-present wrecking ball.

Numbers, momentum surge at Visit Savannah

By most meaningful metrics, it was a pretty good year to not just visit Savannah but for Visit Savannah, the destination marketing organization charged with promoting the Hostess City to travelers.

Savannah sees record convention bookings

From historic preservationists to county commissioners to multi-colored sneaker-wearing marathon runners, the halls and conference rooms of the Savannah International Trade and Convention Center overflowed with activity last year.

That trend will likely continue, according to a new report.

Encouraging signs for Savannah homebuilders as new construction sees gains in 2014

Single-family home construction in the U.S. saw gains in December, capping off a year in which housing starts rose to their highest level in seven years, according to the Commerce Department on Wednesday.

Free tax prep sites open today

Today’s date signals the start of tax season and, with that, a flurry of advertisements from tax preparers eager to help you with your returns — for a price. The good news is that you don’t have to pay anything to get tax help if you don’t want to.

From working in virtual worlds to the real one, Guild Hall co-founders redeveloping two city blocks

While mega hotels are sprouting like dandelions on the north end of Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, go further down the street, just beyond the Interstate 16 flyover, and you’ll find a more curious empire quietly taking root.

Home sales continue upward trend in 2014

From median home prices to unit sales, 2014 was another steady year for Savannah’s housing market, building on the recovery that began two years ago.

In Chatham, Bryan and Effingham counties, median sales prices and unit sales experienced overall gains, according to year-end numbers provided by the Savannah Multi-List Corp., a local real estate tracker.

Funeral homes, crematoriums OK'd for Light Industrial zoning districts

The Metropolitan Planning Commission has approved the addition of funeral homes and crematoriums as acceptable uses in light industrial zoning districts, provided business owners get special approval for the latter.

The commission voted 9-2 on Tuesday for the text amendment after petitioner Willie Michael of Michael and Brown Funeral Home asked for permission to build a new funeral home and crematorium in this district.

Proposed Whitemarsh Island assisted care facility faces neighborhood opposition

A proposal for an assisted-care facility on Whitemarsh Island encountered significant headwinds Tuesday when neighbors voiced strong opposition to a rezoning petition before the Metropolitan Planning Commission. Neighbors’ concerns included increased traffic and noise along with degraded property values.

Local wedding industry awaits lucrative market

For years, same-sex couples have chosen Savannah for their weddings despite the fact that those unions are not legally recognized in Georgia. Now, with Florida officials issuing marriage licenses for the first time this week and the Supreme Court mulling the issue once again, members of the local wedding industry say it’s only a matter of time before Georgia’s ban is overturned, which will open the floodgates of this lucrative market.

Creative Coast kicks off entrepreneurial lecture series 1 Million Cups

The Creative Coast kicked off its new coffee and speaker series, 1 Million Cups, on Wednesday morning, giving two local entrepreneurs a chance to present their startups to a diverse cross section of Savannah’s business community.

A Conquistador sandwich near you? Zunzi's announces investors

A deal, finalized at the end of December for an undisclosed sum, will help Zunzi’s bring its eclectic South African menu far beyond Savannah, said founder Johnny DeBeer.

Business Advocate of the Year: Harold Yellin

Chances are if you watched or attended a City Council, Historic Board, Zoning Board of Appeals or Metropolitan Planning Commission meeting this year, you probably saw attorney Harold Yellin going to bat for a host of heavy-hitter clients.

Small Business of the Year: Sara Jane Children's Boutique

When business owners talk about going mobile, they’re typically referring to phone apps — but for small-business owner Sara Jane Stroupe, she had a more literal goal in mind.

Entrepreneurial Business of the Year: MusicFile Productions

Savannah’s music scene is no triathlete, but check its vital signs and you’ll observe a healthy beat of music festivals, local bands and one-off performances featuring musicians from all over the Southeast.