Joe Downtown:

Joe Downtown: Container Park is taking shape; find out who is moving in

/ Las Vegas Sun

This is an artist’s rendering of what the downtown Container Park will look like when complete.

Container Park Construction

The Mantis is seen after being installed at the Container Park downtown Friday, July 26, 2013. Launch slideshow »

Walking the few blocks of Fremont Street between 6th and 9th streets can be scary, downtown Las Vegans say.

It's a virtual no-man’s land, drastically different from the bustle of the bars and restaurants just a few blocks away.

But that is about to change.

Downtown Container Park, which is being built between 7th and 8th streets, soon will open and could spark development further east on Fremont Street.

Over the past several weeks, leases have been flying back and forth between developer the Downtown Project and small businesses that want to move into the cubicle stores.

Though an opening date hasn't been set, sources say it's unlikely the retail park will debut before downtown’s Life Is Beautiful festival in late October. That's in large part because some Container Park businesses are new and need more time to learn how to operate before serving the expected 25,000 to 30,000 festival-goers.

Container Park has spaces for more than 40 businesses. The names of some tenants have leaked, and VEGAS INC compiled the most recent list to date with the help of Doug McPhail, park director of retail.

McPhail said he expects the park to be nearly full by the time it opens and completely full within a short time of opening. Though the types of businesses are diverse, women’s fashion, unique food and beverage establishments and businesses that help drive entertainment and events were seen as especially important, he added.

Though much has been made of the children’s playground in the middle of the park because police have their hands full dealing with weekend drinking on east Fremont Street, McPhail said that of 43 potential tenants, just five would be licensed to sell alcohol; drinking isn’t going to be driving people to the stores.

One caveat: Licenses aren't finalized, so this list could change by the time the park opens. And this list still isn’t complete — McPhail mentioned that he is working on at least one “big” agreement that he was not yet ready to reveal.

Container Park's tenants are expected to include:

Big Erns BBQ. This will be a permanent restaurant for former Zappos employee Ernie Loya, who has operated out of a temporary space on 7th Street for several months.

The Boozery, a bar.

The Beatnik, a walk-up coffee shop, and Pork ‘n Beans, a restaurant whose proprietors reportedly include Chef Kerry Simon. Both will be combined.

Bin 702, a wine bar.

Pinches Tacos, a restaurant.

American Vagabond, a women’s clothing store.

JoJo’s Jerky, a jerky shop.

The Vapor Loft, which will sell e-cigarettes and vaping accessories.

Bottlehood, which turns old bottles into glassware.

702dtlv, a jewelry, clothing and accessories store.

Sasa Sweets, a dessert shop, which frequently sells goods at the downtown Farmer’s Market.

Las Vegas Kettle Corn, a popcorn shop.

Blackbird Studios, an art gallery.

Bolt Barbers, a barbershop.

Vortex Immersion Dome, which will be able to “immerse” visitors into multidimensional landscapes, such as a visual "ride" from outer space to Las Vegas. It isn’t housed in a cube or container park but is the actual dome at the park’s entrance on Fremont Street.

Alios, an artistic lighting wholesaler, will bring “interesting ‘wow’ stuff” to the park, McPhail said.

• A vegan and raw meals restaurant, name unknown.

Cupkates, a gourmet cupcake store that has had a store in Summerlin’s Tivoli Village.

Sweet Spot Candy Shop, which has had another store open in the past year at 616 Las Vegas Blvd. South.

Mob Museum and Neon Museum store, with merchandise and promotional materials from the two downtown Las Vegas museums.

• Beauty salon, name unknown, that will take up to four spaces in the park.

Tags: News, Business

Joe Schoenmann doesn’t just cover downtown, he lives and works there. Schoenmann is Greenspun Media Group’s embedded downtown journalist, working from an office in the Emergency Arts building.