MADISON (WKOW) -- As the next phase of the Verona Road construction project launches, business owners in the construction corridor worry about continued, declining business, and the possibility the project's completion deadline will be delayed.
Some of the more than one hundred business owners in the corridor came to the state capitol Tuesday, to urge lawmakers to keep the project on track, to try lessen the financial fall out.
Verona Road Business Coalition project manager Cindy Jaggi says nine businesses have either relocated or closed since the project's beginning. She says a coalition survey shows nearly half of the businesses in the corridor have flat or declining revenues.
Quivey's Grove owner Deirdre Garton says even her restaurant property's long-standing success in staging wedding receptions has taken a hit as a result of the construction. She says forty two wedding events were staged at the business in 2016, but just half that amount took place this year to date.
Benjamin Plumbing owner Dale Benjamin's core business moved from the Verona Road corridor, but he continues to rent commercial property near the road construction. Benjamin says uncertainty over the project's future funding and timeline makes renting space in his building a challenge.
But co-chair of the state's influential Joint Finance Committee, Rep. John Nygren (R-Green Bay) says he's verified the project's timeline is unchanged, with necessary funding an element of the proposed state budget. Funding for road projects has been a contentious piece of the discussion over the budget proposal among the legislature's Republican majority.
State officials say the construction project's just launched phase will involve nightly lane closures of Verona Road between Verona and Raymond Roads, to the Fitchrona Road underpass in Fitchburg..