Mari Mac Businesses Weather Construction

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County > Owners report varying impacts from parking lot closure

The construction of a new entrance into the Mari Mac Shopping Center is making access to the center’s businesses even more challenging than usual. Owners and managers are coping as best they can, and a number of them are surprisingly upbeat about the situation.
The Pajarito Brewpub and Grill and Daniel’s Café Haagen-Dazs are feeling the greatest impact, since they have lost not only their entrances but all their adjacent parking during construction — a critical factor for lunchtime business.
“Parking was already a stress at lunchtime, because there are so many restaurants,” said Dan Sena, who co-owns Daniel’s with his wife Margie. Sena estimates they are losing 20 percent of their business daily. The day two additional lanes were closed for re-striping, that number jumped to 40 percent.
But Sena thinks the end result will be worth it.
“We’ve been trying to get this done for 30 years, so it’s a good thing,” Sena said. He called the current configuration, with a blind curve next the exit from the brewpub and cars turning into pedestrian crossings at both entrances “an accident waiting to happen” that could have led to a fatal incident.
“Having a safer intersection is well worth any inconvenience right now,” Sena said.

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