Growing pains in Colleyville are slowing down business along Highway 26. So the city is rolling out a program to help businesses affected by a major construction project.
This construction isn't expected to be done until the end of next year. But the city has $100,000 available for grants to be used towards extra advertising to help businesses that are struggling to get customers through the doors.
Orange cones line Highway 26 in Colleyville where the expansion project impacts an estimated 100 businesses, like Jersey Mike’s Subs.
Gene Champagne is the marketing director of the Colleyville sandwich shop. He says construction blocked a major entrance to their business.
“It's just been tough. It's been tough for all of us,” he said. “It was really getting to where we would do lunches, and we'd only get a handful of people in here. You had to pass us to get here. So once you pass us, some people just decided to get something else.”
Several businesses reached out to the city with similar concerns.
“The majority of Colleyville business takes place on 26,” said Colleyville Asst. City Manager Mark Wood. “We receive calls on a weekly basis from business owners. It's no secret Colleyville is under construction. We're not trying to hide from that. We're trying to be proactive with our business owners.”
The city program grants eligible businesses $1,000 for advertising to help them through the construction period. Jersey Mike's was one of the first businesses to get the grant and is already putting the money to use.
“I went out and got the biggest banner I could get,” Champagne said.
So far, seven businesses have taken advantage of the deal.
“We're here to be a resource,” Wood said. “We really want people to know that Colleyville is open for business.”
The city is also working on more programs to help support businesses until construction is over.
The program has some requirements businesses have to meet, including having to have their advertising approved by the city. The city has capped the program at $100,000, but city officials say they could expand the program to help more businesses if they get enough interest.