Sandwich shop owner Fabian Orozco believes in southeast Colorado Springs.

Despite the area’s high crime, poverty and unemployment rates, he recently opened his third Taste of Philly restaurant in a storefront at the Hancock Plaza shopping center on South Academy Boulevard.

Orozco has lived in the southeast for years. Neighbors who’d eaten at his two north side Taste of Phillys — the first of which opened more than a decade ago — asked when he planned to open a location closer to home, he said.

As Orozco sees it, southeast residents spend more money to eat out these days. His delivery drivers are happy and the area shows signs of improvement. More than two months since opening his southeast-side Taste of Philly, business is good at the new location, he said...