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Bridge Work Hurting Small Business

Town encourages shoppers to venture to Bowman Road.

Three months ago, plenty of motorists would be hard pressed to even locate the small bridge over Shem Creek on Bowman Road.

Going on its fifth month of closure, motorists surely now know about the bridge. But no one may be suffering more than the small businesses between Johnnie Dodds and Chuck Dawley boulevards.

The impact has been so significant, the town has issued a public plea reminding residents to patronize the area's small businesses.

"Whenever possible, stop by to patronize these businesses," said Town Administrator Eric DeMoura. "The bridge will reopen next month and relief is on the way, but it’s important to support our businesses in the midst of the road construction."

The town has sought to bolster businesses all along U.S. 17 as the town, county and state spend millions on road work there. Signs along the route encourage motorists to shop local and jokingly refer to Mount Pleasant as "Construction Land."

But the plight faced by businesses in the impacted areas is apparently no laughing matter.

"Local businesses create economic activity and character in our community," DeMoura said. "Most new jobs are provided by local businesses and customer service is better. Local businesses also invest in the community, and competition and diversity lead to more consumer choices."

Donna Gill Colestock September 14, 2012 at 12:43 PM
May I suggest you publish a comprehensive list of the businesses, including the name as well as details about the goods/services/industries. That would be very helpful.
Lowcountry Larry September 14, 2012 at 01:25 PM
Still shopping at the Kmart! That store has improved a lot in the last year or so. That store had been looking pretty sad before, but now it's clean, the floors shine, and the lighting is nice and bright. The shelves are well-stocked and the prices are good, too. They must have a new manager running the place. I'll buy here instead of dealing with the long lines at Walmart.
Contradictory Actions September 14, 2012 at 02:46 PM
... the same small businesses that will be put OUT of business by the Big Boxes they want to bring to town. CONTRADICTORY CLOWNS. Your two faces are really showing, boys. Maybe Mayor BS and Demoura should have published another Editorial in the Post and Courier for no one to read, again... Stop trying to justify your wreckless actions. We understand, and we WILL make the necessary changes to save whats left of our TOWN. I agree with Donna. A list of Locally owned and operated businesses would be nice addition to the Patch site.. I suggest contacting Lowcounty Local First to compile that list. Patch + LLF could be a match made in Local Heaven.
Donna Gill Colestock September 14, 2012 at 03:27 PM
Let's start with just a list of the businesses on Bowman. How hard can that be?
William J. Hamilton September 14, 2012 at 04:20 PM
This has also really messed up our CARTA 401 East Cooper Connector bus route, forcing a detour which keeps it off schedule, sometimes missing it's connections. Ridership is way down. We've also had all the important bus stops around this intersection which had benches and got heavy use torn up. We have promises we'll have benches when this is over, but nothing real has happened yet.
JoSCh September 14, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Little Caesars, K-Mart... I dunno what else is there. I still go to those stores when I need cheap pizza or Craftsman tools.
kenneth glasson September 14, 2012 at 04:25 PM
An important note that yesterday, in a conversation with Director of Transportation Brad Morrison, he indicated the bridge would be completed within two weeks. Good news for the businesses affected by the construction! Ken Glasson Mt Pleasant Town Council
Patch.com September 14, 2012 at 04:52 PM
That is awesome news, Ken. Thanks for sharing!
Trey Rhodes September 14, 2012 at 05:30 PM
There is also quite a few businesses in the Bowman Business park. And a little farther down, there is a TV repair shop and a ceramics store. There's actually quite a few stores there that more people could go to, but have been thwarted once they remember that they can't get there from Hwy. 17. It is a long way around. Seems like it could have been done with a temporary bridge of some sort or a partial shutdown with the new brdige next to it. I'm sure it all has to do with funding. Coming back from reduced income for 5 months is all but impossible. God bless those guys for sticking it out. I have a feeling they will have a hard time surviving even once the bridge is open. Apologies from free enterprise American/South Carolinian/Charlestonian/East Cooper resident.
Phillips Wilson September 14, 2012 at 05:43 PM
We obviously need more 'funny' signs. Yeah, thats it... more signs... HURRY!!!
JoSCh September 14, 2012 at 06:24 PM
"like"
Beaded Venus September 14, 2012 at 07:57 PM
This is also affecting the small businesses on Chuck Dalwey. People heading north on 17n have no way of knowing how to get onto Chuck Daw;ey as ther has been no sign, nothing for the past several months indicating how to get onto Chuck Dawley. how about a little help here! How much can one sign cost??? I am collecting and paying taxes for the improvement but if this continues for much longer i will not longer be in business to collected taxes to contribute to this recontruction. To top if off there has been a crack down on any extra signage that we might pay for ourselves and put out to try and help our business. I feel that Mount pleasant is more interested in attracting big box business than keeping small independant business.
cluster September 14, 2012 at 08:35 PM
The Town would rather spend money on signs like "Welcome to Construction Land" or "Construction, What Construction?" than the basic, NEEDED directional signs that the public needs to navigate this CLUSTER.
Allison September 17, 2012 at 07:39 PM
Excellent! I know the businesses will be relieved as well as commuter traffic on Coleman & Rifle Range!
Jen Jen September 17, 2012 at 08:51 PM
I saw a bunch of signs sitting in the median around the 526/17 interchange. Hopefully will be up soon to eleviate some of the confusion in that area.

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