SPOKANE, Wa. – Monroe Street has been open for about two weeks, but some businesses in the area are still feeling the effects of the construction.
Some of the most noticeable changes along the street are the road layout, smooth pavement and new bike racks. But for businesses, the biggest change they’ve seen is their number of customers.
“We lost about, I’d say, over 60 percent of our income during that construction, and laid off quite a few people,” said Lonnie Germain, owner of Monroe Street Grill. “It’s picking up a little bit, but nothing, nowhere near as fast as it dropped.”
Germain said he has been promoting the grill’s new lounge area near its bar and he has added additional TV’s to the area to help attract more customers.
“We’re hoping that’ll pick up a little bit more of the slack,” Germain said.
Dan’s Barber Shop has been in its same location on Monroe for over 60 years. But even though it has had some of the same customers for generations, people still were not wanting to travel through the construction.
“Our average decrease…was 46 percent. It was hard,” said Johannah Flambouras, the shop’s floor manager.
But the shop survived.
Flambouras said she was only able to take a break once on Sunday because of how busy the shop was.
While the construction presented several challenges for the shop, Flambouras said she thinks the changes will be good for the area.
“People that we don’t even recognize, haven’t seen in the neighborhood (have been) coming through the neighborhood, checking out businesses and stuff, so that’s nice,” Flambouras said.