A tale of two avenues: Businesses cope with street construction
Reporter: Marcelino Benito
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) -It's been a rocky road for 4th Avenue businesses during street car construction. Crews have re-opened one stretch of 4th, but the construction nightmare on another stretch is just beginning.
For now the folks at Brooklyn Pizza Kitchen are celebrating. After a slow summer bummed by streetcar construction, the pizza ovens are revving up to make up for lost business.
"It's been difficult," owner Tony Vaccaro said. "Sales were down at least 25 percent. That's pretty huge especially because it wasn't one month. It was three and a half months I believe, so yeah it's been difficult."
All of that now in the past though, the fences have come down, and the foot traffic is back.
"We're thrilled that the road is now open," Vaccaro said.
It makes for more customers and more pizza orders that fly out faster than ever. Vaccaro says it's a sign 4th Avenue is back.
"I'm looking forward to people being able to enjoy this part of 4th Avenue," Vaccaro said. "It's a bright future."
South of Sixth Street though, it's a different story. Construction now underway on this stretch of 4th Avenue, and it'll be there for the next four months.
"I've been hanging on for four years with the economy anyway," Jeff Foote said.
Foote owns Bix Furniture Refinishing. He's facing the same challenge, staying open, during months of construction.
"I'm anticipating a hit, this is only the first week for this section," Foote said.
With months to go, he like every business owner on 4th, hope the fences don't keep customers away. They are optimistic that street car construction won't derail business.