In latest weeks there was an uptick in guests, which helps companies, however the mayor worries it additionally poses dangers.
LEAVENWORTH, Wash. — The mayor of Leavenworth is closing elements of downtown to assist with social distancing.
However for a city whose companies depend on the two million vacationers they see a 12 months, some enterprise homeowners fear this might add to the monetary hardships they’re already dealing with.
“My mother and father opened the Wooden Store Toy Retailer 46 years in the past subsequent June,” stated Kevin Rieke, the proprietor of a number of Leavenworth shops together with The Hat Store and The Wooden Store.
His companies have been shut down because the begin of the stay-at-home order in March.
“We needed to lay off 14 staff at our explicit enterprise,” Rieke stated.
Since Leavenworth runs on tourism and the keep at dwelling order prevents individuals from touring, companies on the town are struggling.
“There are loads of companies that will must go away. I do know loads of companies are actually on their final month’s financial savings,” stated Rieke.
In latest weeks there was an uptick in guests, which helps companies, however Mayor Carl Florea worries it additionally poses dangers.
“Folks had been crowded onto the sidewalk and never doing social distancing and in addition not carrying masks and it’s actual concern,” stated Mayor Florea.
He determined to shut a number of the predominant streets in downtown so vacationers don’t have the choice to park or drive by.
“By closing the streets down, the busier streets, it provides room for social distancing,” he stated.
Whereas many companies welcome the change, some are nervous this might add to the monetary losses they’ve already skilled.
“There are loads of enterprise although that do depend on individuals having the ability to drive proper as much as their area. We’d like guests to even pay our payments and so we’re all pressured,” defined Rieke.
The aim isn’t to chop down on enterprise, in line with Mayor Florea, it’s to permit for it in a manner that’s protected in the course of the pandemic.
“Our retail shops, our eating places can spill out into the road and use a few of that avenue for added retail area,” he stated.
Rieke stated companies are working with metropolis leaders to discover a option to defend their livelihood and hold their metropolis protected.
“We’re not open anyway, so what it has really pressured us to do, is to actually be severe about having one cohesive unit as a enterprise neighborhood. We’re going to be open as quickly as we’re allowed to be open,” stated Rieke.
The town of Leavenworth is handing out masks to guests and hopes they nonetheless come, however Mayor Florea stated it must be finished in a manner that’s protected.
Mayor Florea added that the open area will assist throughout Section 2 of the governor’s plan to reopen the state, when retail and eating places are allowed to open at restricted capability.
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