ROCHESTER — A new bakery offering Puerto Rican specialties opened last month on North Clinton Avenue.
El Morro Bakery joins El Pilon Criollo across the street in revitalizing the "La Avenida" corridor of the city, officials said. Mayor Lovely Warren helped cut the ribbon during the Nov. 18 grand-opening ceremony.
"This is how we’re going to transform this neighborhood: One building, one home, one person, one business at a time," said City Councilwoman Jackie Ortiz.
Owners Pedro Ortiz and Brenda Rios also have demonstrated their investment in the area, since this is their second business. For nearly three decades, Pedro Ortiz has operated Borinquen Jewelry located next door. Both businesses are housed in the 980 N. Clinton Ave. building Pedro Ortiz also owns.
He agreed that the area is improving, he added.
"There are more businesses and more people coming in," he said.
Those businesses still face a hurdle in attracting customers outside of the city, though, who worry the neighborhood is dangerous, noted Zury Brown, who owns El Pilon and has expanded her property to offer customer parking.
"We’re trying to change that and have more people coming to the city," Brown said.