A $2.2 million bridge rehabilitation project in the Town of Forestport is underway. The D.O.T. is working on resurfacing 2 bridges along a stretch of route 28. Detours are rerouting travelers around the construction, but, the Forestport Diner doesn’t expect any changes to business. The Owners of Scooter’s Bar & Grill and the hardware store just up the street aren’t too concerned either. That’s because locals are just using the one-lane bridges on River Street to simply drive around the detour, but out-of-towners are likely going to use the detour that takes them away from some businesses.
Further along route 28 The Sled Works does expect some business loss, but right across the street the Wigwam Tavern is preparing for a hit from the lack of traffic. Wigwam Employee Anita Kotary says they’ve already had a difficult winter season because of COVID.
"They’re going to follow the D.O.T. detour. It’ll take them all the way around into Boonville, and then they’ll just head north, and they’ll miss us. With the limited capacity we’ve had to turn away a lot of customers. The week before Memorial weekend is when we start getting a lot of traffic again because everybody’s trying to open up their camps for the Memorial weekend, and that’s when our season really kicks off again."
Kratzy’s Bar & Grill is also expecting some loss of business because of the detour, but Waitress Abigail Scouten is trying to be optimistic.
"I’m really hoping for a busy summer season coming off of COVID, but I am nervous about the bridge closure for sure because I do rely on tips. So the less busy it is, the less money I make you know what I mean, so that is a little nerve racking for me."
The bridge work is should be completed by July, and there is some remaining work expected to last until the end of summer.