Streetcar construction concerns Tucson business ownersPosted: Updated:
TUCSON, Ariz. -- The modern streetcar promises to revolutionize Tucson transit, but the project is still years away from becoming a reality. And long before Tucsonans are able to hop on, construction could leave many businesses stranded.
Smoothies are blending at Xoom Juice. Right across the street at The Hub diners crowd in for lunch.
But in just a matter of months, these downtown Tucson streets wont look the same.
"Businesses should be prepared," said Britton Dornquast with RTA Main Street Business Assistance.
Businesses along congress and all across town will see construction right outside their doors, And that could mean up to a 50 percent drop in traffic.
Luckily, the RTA's Main Street Assistance Program is here to help. It's free and they've already reached out to over 800 businesses on the four-mile route.
"Our goal is to get them through these projects Healthy and functional, and ideally, even better than when they started," said Dornquast.
"The goal is to minimize impact outside their businesses," said project manager Shellie Ginn.
City Streetcar project manager Shellie Ginn says if businesses are patient and work together. The end result will be well worth it.
"Once this project is done, it will be incredible for Tucson," said Ginn.
And that's the gamble businesses are taking. They think downtown Tucson is seeing a rebirth and the modern street car is a pivotal part of it.
The city says if all goes according to plan, the streetcar should be winding down these streets by October of 2013.