Businesses Bounce Back After Auburn Roundabout

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Construction cones are back up at the North Main Roundabout as workers finish up some extra work leftover from the project that wrapped up last fall. Many business owners in the area say the cone zone hurt their profits before, but they're more optimistic this time around.

It may be empty here at Altamore's Ristorante along Main Street. but that's not because of the roundabout construction nearby.

"I think business has improved."

Owner Alberto says business is slowly but surely getting back to normal nearly a year after construction started.

"We have, I think a good and loyal following, but yes we did lose business last year. I think this year is a little bit different people are starting to get used to it," said Alberto.

Right now the two lane roundabout at Auburn and Main is down to one lane of traffic while crews finish landscaping in the area.

"We like the landscaping and that's going on around and the development that's coming to their neighborhood."

While businesses like Altamore's survived the first round of construction, Alberto says other stores weren't as lucky.

"We lost some businesses during the construction," said Alberto.

He says Alpha Floral and 'Pennies in Your Pockets' on Main closed before the roundabout opened in October. And even with the recent lane closure, other businesses owners like Jeanine Dabson of Stella and Notte, says their customers aren't avoiding the area.

"We do get a lot of out of town customers that no one has had any problems with the roundabout and it seems that the people that have they find a different way to get in here," said Dabson.

Alberto says he hopes once the landscaping and construction is finished, it'll attract more businesses to the area.

Public Works Director Tim Hanson says the roundabout should open up for two lane traffic in about 3 weeks.

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station. powered by Disqus