After years of work, a vital part of Danville's future is back in business.

The mayor and other city leaders cut the ribbon Friday morning, officially opening the redesigned downtown area of Main Street.

For nearly two years construction crews have replaced an old motel with a parking lot, widened the sidewalks, and added benches and trees along the stretch of the repaved road.

Businesses lost profit during construction.

"Today we would like to express our deepest gratitude to our Main Street merchants and their patrons for their patience, for their patience throughout this process,” City of Danville Mayor Sherman Saunders said.

A grant from the Virginia Department of Transportation helped pay for the project.

This marks the end of the first phase of the River District that includes new businesses and restaurants on Main Street and in the Tobacco District.