Agents are leasing space in a new shopping center on Airline Highway near La. Highway 44 in Gonzales. The center is ready for buildout, and two eateries have already leased about 5,700 square feet of space: Casa Maria Mexican Restaurant and Pretzel Twister. Chris Shaheen, who is marketing the center for Saurage Commercial Real Estate, says he’s hoping to attract more service businesses, such as nail salons, boutiques, cell phone dealers or gift shops. One of the obstacles could be the meltdown in the finance industry, which has made it tougher to get credit. “I spoke to a lady today who is scared to make a move because of what’s going on, it’s kind of a catch-22,” Shaheen says. “We’re crossing our fingers that people can get the financing they need to open a business.” – Timothy Boone, Baton Rouge Business Report