New Albany business owners hoping for help to stay afloat

Road construction and funding for businesses impacted
Published: Dec. 15, 2022 at 11:18 PM EST
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A project meant to strengthen businesses might actually be killing them.

The Main Street Revitalization Project in New Albany has had some unintended consequences when it comes to the businesses that line the street.

Thursday, many of those business owners attended the council meeting hoping to get approval for a “survivor fund ordinance” that would give them federal money that would help them stay afloat financially.

In September we talked to New Albany City Engineer Larry Summers about the revitalization project. He said the contractor was required to maintain access to businesses and homes.

Three months later, some businesses are saying it hasn’t been enough.

A room full of struggling business owners werewaiting to hear if they’re going to get some help from their government.

“Interrupting foot traffic for over a year is devastating to most of Main Street merchants,” one owner said.

“I had three people put in their two week notices today because they’re not making the money that they need to make,” said another.

The business owners didn’t get the answer they were hoping for.

“It is very hard from our side and from a government level to pay a private business,” said Jason Applegate on the New Albany City Council.

The New Albany City Council voted to send the “Main Street Survival Fund” to committee for more consideration.

“Being able to get the eyes on your business has really been difficult,” said Dan Hardesty.

Dan Hardesty is the owner of Eureka Menswear, which is right on Main Street.

We also talked to him in September about the project and he was a little more optimistic back then.

“This street in particular, bringing more retail, more people, it’s going to be great,” Hardesty said in September.

Now, things aren’t looking good for him and other businesses.

“I’ve always used this phrase. We invested in this city, we’re looking for the them to reinvest back into us a little bit,” Hardesty said.

Hardesty and other businesses are still excited for the finished project, but they’re worried they might not survive long enough to even benefit from it.

“We’re still going to continue to fight man. Not just with the whole city thing, but fight to keep our businesses man. We’re passionate about this David. We believe in what we do or we wouldn’t be here,” Hardesty said.

The committee is going to keep searching for different ways to help the businesses.