My favorite downtown restaurant, Bosphorous, is still open. As are Shapiro's, Iaria's and some of the more expensive restaurants (Capitol Grill and Hyde Park, etc.). I know another new restaurant just opened up Super Bowl weekend. I believe there are more coming. I know some of the big employers downtown, like Salesforce, are letting their employees work from home until at least August. I'm sure other employers are doing that, too, which really hurts restaurants that rely on the lunch crowd.
Covid had a lot to do with businesses closing up shop. I know several business owners downtown. The art gallery that closed was owned by a family that goes to my church. It got destroyed during the riots. Some art pieces were just destroyed inside the gallery, and they found other pieces dropped along the sidewalk down the block. The family decided that they didn't have confidence in the current mayor to keep their business safe, and after the riots, they didn't feel safe enough to take their kids to their own art gallery any more. So they closed the business. The Five Guys right next door got destroyed, too. The owner of Dick's Bodacious BBQ said that he was struggling with Covid, but after the riots occurred, he too lost faith in the mayor. He said that it was too costly to pay premium rates for a downtown location to not have confidence in the mayor's ability to protect his business or employees. So he decided to close the restaurant and is planning on opening a new restaurant outside of Marion County. Many business owners cited the one-two punch of the riots and Covid as reasons for closing up. Hopefully, Covid numbers continue to drop and there will not be any more riots. It's sad to see what downtown became last year.
On the bright side, things are getting better downtown. It's getting safer, new businesses are moving in. I'm hoping it looks better as more people get vaccinated and return to working downtown.