Local business suffer as O'neal Lane construction continues
POSTED: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 - 7:00pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, February 19, 2013 - 7:04pm
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — It's a common scene on O'neal Lane - cars not moving due to the seemingly never-ending road construction.
Now, businesses on the busy road are suffering from the lack of money they are seeing coming in, and they are blaming it on this installment of the city’s Green Light Project.
Michael Lane, owner of LA Boilers on O'neal, said the construction has led to a huge hit to his store's bottom line.
“We have so many people that tell us there's no way they're coming down O'neal. They avoid it like the plague,” stated Lane. “We've already taken at least a thirty percent hit over the last three years!”
He says that's a big hit for a small business,” I know a lot of other people down here - really good people that have spent all their life getting into business - and they're sitting there watching it slip away right now.”
Woodburners owner Jamie Sandlin said his business may have to move if the construction doesn’t come to completion soon. “We're actually hoping to move. If this is going to continue through our next season… it just hurts too much,” said Sandlin.
The project started in 2009. The plan was to add one lane in each direction; however, due to unexpected delays, the project is in its fourth year.
“To be going into the fourth year of working on a one-mile section is absurd,” stated Lane.
DPW hopes to wrap the originally $27 million dollar project by November 2013, and has stated they are actively looking into ways to speed up the project.
Dozens of business owners all along a crammed O'neal say they need to see it happen sooner than later before their businesses shut down.