Business Monday briefs: Design Workshop promotes from within; Colorado restaurants try to bounce back
Design Workshop has announced nine promotions across five studios, including at its Aspen location.
Jessica Garrow was promoted to principal at the Aspen office. Other promotions included Jason Ficht and Ben Roush in Los Angeles to principals. Promoted to associates were Sara Bonacquist and Hadley Peterson in Denver and Brian Chambers, Tarana Hafiz and Erin Ringsred in Houston.
Aspen residents might have first known Garrow from her time as head of the city’s community development department. Garrow joined Design Workshop in August 2019 and works as a community planner specializing in comprehensive planning, policy planning, public participation, entitlements and land use development.
“She creates solutions that respect diverse opinions, promote community values, and protect the characteristics that make communities distinct,” said a news release from Design Workshop, which was founded in 1969 and has headquarters in Denver.
Struggling restaurant industry on the rebound
The Colorado Restaurant Association’s impact survey taken in April and May shows restaurants combined to lose more than $3 billion in 2020.
The survey was based on sales tax receipts, “but revenue gains have begun,” the association said in a news release.
Among the survey’s findings for 2020:
• 43% of restaurants reported they are down in revenue compared with pre-pandemic levels
• 11% said their revenue losses were greater than 50%; 56% reported losses greater than 20%
• Average revenue is up 3% compared with this time last year
• More than 90% of Colorado restaurants are currently having trouble hiring staff
• Nationally, restaurant staffing is down 14% compared with pre-pandemic levels; locally, staffing is down an average of 9%
• 65% of operators believe the primary hiring obstacle is workers preferring to remain on unemployment benefits
• Just over 15% report that their workers have left the restaurant industry for other jobs
• More than 10% cite increased competition for hiring as a factor
• Back-of-house positions (line cook, dishwasher/porter) are the most difficult positions to fill right now, but 65% of restaurants are also struggling to hire servers
• 41% of restaurants say they are having trouble retaining workers right now
Almost half of those restaurants believe the primary obstacle to retention is increased workloads due to staffing shortages.
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Three Aspen-area home sales last week for a combined $99 million punctuated a trend this year where ultra-high-end properties are fetching premium prices in Pitkin County’s tight residential market.