Business owners on St. Mary’s Street say they are hopeful that building blocks are disappearing. He said that the construction of the road has greatly slowed down the business activity in the area.
“It’s been over two years of construction and financially devastating, but we have a lot of hope,” said Tycoon Flats co-owner Malcolm Hartman Jr.
In the year Visitors to the St. Mary’s Strip say it will be impossible to walk around the area once construction begins in 2021.
“The last few months, it’s been really bad,” said Genevieve Duron, a regular at the strip.
“I understand I35 and all that, but this is an intersection and you know there’s a Hella Bar here, you know there’s a lot of people, it gets a lot of customers,” Duron said.
Businesses involved in the construction said their lives were at risk and the timing was worse.
“We’ve had to go through Covid and when everyone started moving out of VV, we immediately went into construction, so I wouldn’t wish this on my worst enemy,” Hartman said.
Hartman admits the city has tried to mitigate the damage by offering financial relief, but he doesn’t feel it’s enough.
“We were lucky to get one of the assists, maybe a twentieth of what we needed,” Hartman said.
Now that the St. Mary’s Strip is becoming accessible again, Hartman said, it will be beneficial not only for locals but also for tourists.
“It will be very pedestrian friendly. People can come out of the Pearl or out on the river to see what’s going on in North St. Marys, Hartman said.