Businesses in the Greengate shopping precinct on the corner of Prince Street and Woodward Street say they have been left out of pocket after they were not given notice of roadworks and street closures.
Farmgate Butchery owner Greg Pearce said he purchased $10,000 worth of meat before last week’s closures of Prince Street, much of which had to be thrown away as his trade fell by up to 70 per cent due to limited road access for his customers.
“The meat that’s in the cool room will last a little while, it’s the meat that’s cut and in the cabinet that’s a worry,” Mr Pearce said.
“I’m throwing out food that I shouldn’t have to. If I had known, I could have ordered less.”
The first I knew about it was when I couldn’t turn up Sampson Street from the lollipop man.Farmgate Butchery owner Greg Pearce
Mr Pearce estimates he will be down between $4000 and $5000 in lost sales.
He said he lost about $1500 on Wednesday, and a further $2000 on Thursday, but trade had picked up a bit by Saturday morning after word got around there was still access to the shop.
Mr Pearce said he realised road closures had to happen but he was not given notice and was frustrated that the company responsible was dismissive of the issue.
“It’s hurting my business badly,” Mr Pearce said.
MAP: Where are the businesses located …
“We weren’t notified about these roadworks at all. If I knew about it I could plan against it.
“The first I knew about it was when I couldn’t turn up Sampson Street from the lollipop man.”
Although car parking outside the businesses was not affected during the roadworks Mr Pearce said the difficulty caused by the closures had obviously deterred many of his customers.
“There has been access but every customer has said, what a challenge it was to get here,” he said.
He said the roadworks started about 3pm on Wednesday, affecting his busiest trading time between then and 5pm.
Greengate Newsagency owner Stephen Parker said his business was also impacted by the closure with sales down almost 35 per cent on Thursday and more than 23 per cent on Friday, but said he would be able to get money back on the unsold newspapers.
“I’m lucky – newspapers don’t go off,” Mr Parker said.
“We got no notification … whatsoever, we got no written notification. A traffic controller came in on Monday to buy a drink and they said the road would be closed from Wednesday. I asked for more information and she said she didn’t have any more flyers left.”
I’m throwing out food that I shouldn’t have to.Farmgate Butchery owner Greg Pearce
Mr Parker said a warning that an Orange City Council spokesman made on radio on Thursday morning about the road closure made no mention that businesses would be open, and there was no signage at any of the closed intersections saying businesses would be open.
Council’s Corporate and Community Relations manager Nick Redmond said the intention was for residents and businesses affected by upcoming works to be notified by letter, face-to-face contact or a combination of the two, depending on the scale and length of the work.
“As for work in Prince Street this week, it was being completed by a contractor. Providing advice to residents was part of the contract for these works,” Mr Redmond said.
“The contractor has advised that information to all affected businesses was provided by way of face-to-face, and to residents through a notice in the mail box.
“If the appropriate representative within a business was not spoken to, or a residence was missed, then there are some opportunities to improve that communication.
“At all times throughout the work car parking was not affected at each business and one lane of the road was open to traffic.”
Mr Redmond said the council’s priority was to improve the city’s road network and at times there will be inconvenience to people.
“We’ve had feedback on the condition of Prince Street, which aligned with our own asset management systems, and the result of the upgrade will mean a better road for everyone,” he said.
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