Businesses Brace For Bridge Replacement Projects

Businesses Brace For Bridge Replacement Projects

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The sign on Route 11 says it all. The bridge just south of Hermon-DeKalb Schools is being replaced. You may also end up waiting 10 miles north at the bridge in Canton. Its deck will be replaced. Business owners on Main Street are facing it with a stiff upper lip.

“I think everyone is going to be in it together. They're just going to suffer and hopefully encourage a positive attitude and look toward alternatives,” said Lisa Lazenby, manager at Nature's Storehouse.

Canton business owners were meeting at the Stadium sports bar Thursday afternoon to discuss the situation. Some think people getting blocked in or out of parking slots on Main Street might be a problem. The same for delivery trucks.

“For them, yeah, I foresee it being a problem, especially for the big restaurants that get their deliveries right on Main Street,” said Erin Alguire, co-owner of Sposa Bella.

It was thought traffic on the Canton bridge would be reduced to just one lane. But the Department of Transportation now says two of the bridges' four lanes will be kept open. That means traffic can move at the same time in both directions. It also means Heritage and Island Parks can stay open.

So far, business owners along Canton's Main Street are exhibiting a can-do attitude when it comes to this bridge project. But their patience will be sorely tested when the bridge is reduced to two lanes and traffic begins to back up.

The Canton bridge will be kept open to pedestrians and other modes of transport. But the bridge further south could be reduced to one lane at times. That's an $8 million project, while the Canton deck replacement will cost about $1.5 million.

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