Friday, October 16, 2009

LRT Construction Impacts 2

Senor Wong restaurant invited me downtown St. Paul to see what is happening to their restaurant. The streets were closed for LRT construction and they are losing customers. I asked them to speak to University Ave businesses. Yesterday one of the owners came and spoke to University Avenue businesses at the UABA meeting.

Everyone was surprised at how badly Senor Wong is doing because of the construction. The owner said he stopped talking to Met Council because there's nothing they can do to help him. He's focused on running his business and don't have time. He said if the construction doesn't finish on time he will probably go out of business.

AEDA took these pictures of the construction:

When we went downtown to check out the construction we also went to Prada's Cafe. The owner wasn't there, but he wrote this letter to AEDA to share with everybody:

October 14, 2009

Prada’s Food Service LLC

111 Kellogg Blvd. Suite # 140

Saint Paul Mn., 55101

University Avenue business owners:

My name is Carlos Prada and I’m the owner of Prada’s Café in downtown St. Paul; we opened for business in April 20th this year.

When we opened we had many challenges like to getting organized, and we learned so much about the business. But we kept trying and did what we had to do to get this business ahead.

Everything was going well until light rail construction started some time in July. I knew the light rail was supposed to be built in the area but I did not know exactly where. If I had been told that the light rail will be right outside of the property where the café is I probably wouldn’t buy it.

Any way just want to share with you that the sales of my business went down between 40% to 50% since this project started. It’s unfortunate because when it’s completed it’s going to be great and supposed to help everybody as a transportation method, and hopefully help to generate more business opportunities.

Thanks for the opportunity to share my experience with you.

I think it’s great that you guys are organized and good luck to you all.


Carlos Prada

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