Construction affecting local businesses

By Jason Belk - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The road construction occurring along Common Street has not only impacted some people's travel routes, but it is hurting some local businesses.

"Everyone says that the backbone of our country is small businesses, yet when we have a project like this nobody really cares, and I would like to see that change," said James "Jimbo" Pousson, owner of Jimbo's.

The construction affecting Pousson is the expansion of Common St. from two to five lanes.

The road construction along Common St. is something Jimbo does not disagree with, but the impact it is having on his bottom line is something he just cannot ignore.

"Our business is off about 40 percent, that's tough. Thank God that I've been here 30 years and have established a pretty solid foundation," said Pousson.

The voices of small business owners such as Jimbo are not going unheard at the Department of Transportation and Development.

While small business owners' inquiries about possible compensation during construction cannot be accommodated, the DOTD does say that they understand the negative impact of the construction, but hope one completed the businesses can reap the benefits of the increased traffic.

"We hope that at the end of the project that their businesses will flourish and that hopefully part of it is because of the road construction, and some tough times now, but we hope for some better times after the project is complete," said Bobby Hennigan, the LA DOTD District Administrator.

The construction will continue for most of the year, and making it more important for people to remember to support their local businesses in these tough times.

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