Downtown Cedar Rapids has changed a lot in the last 30 years. The proof is in this TV commercial from 1986.

Yes, downtown has not only changed a lot in Cedar Rapids in the last three decades. It's done it everywhere. Gone are the department stores and unfortunately, in the case of this commercial, I don't believe a single one of these businesses is open today. The Village Inn (Pancake House) was the most recent to close when the Collins Road location shut its doors. Businesses on the skywalk? Not really, anymore. Armstrong's, Linn Photo, Fidlar Business Systems.

That's not to say downtown isn't vibrant, though. It definitely is. Come downtown nearly any night of the week and you'll quickly realize people don't just work here, they play here too.