Downtown Panama City construction affecting business owners

The Harrison Avenue Streetscape project in downtown Panama City is causing some road closures which are affecting businesses.
Published: Jun. 7, 2023 at 7:00 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - The noise of construction is making business difficult for some downtown business owners.

“Harrison Avenue that has been closed for all this renovation; it has affected us. we’re down 30-35 percent,” said David Parmer, owner of Millie’s Cafe.

Parmer says the construction is hurting his store’s bottom line.

Some are even saying they’re losing sales and seeing fewer people.

“It affects you, you don’t have walk-up business like you usually have,” said Parmer.

They’re losing parking spaces, before the construction people could park on the street.

“Parking has become a real issue,” said Parmer. “Everyone has to use Park Street that’s in this particular area and that’s not much parking on that particular street.”

Parmer says they are still able to stay afloat despite the roadblocks.

“On certain nights of the week we have music it’s in the courtyard here and that has really kept our heads above the water line,” said Parmer. “Really, it’s helped us a lot.”

Another business on Harrison Avenue is also being affected.

“When I got here yesterday, I was greeted with the sign and I was like ok positive attitude here,” said Lesli Todd, owner of Jute Palm.

Todd says they are just now experiencing some of the growing pains.

“I did see a decrease in customers yesterday and today has been slow,” said Todd.

Still, business owners are looking for that silver lining.

“I am one of the fortunate ones I have a door that goes straight to the back, and I have little a parking lot but there is [a] parking lot on the street. So, hopefully, I will have that open in the next few weeks so people can enter through the back,” said Todd.

“Don’t let it get you down and it does get you down when you’re used to having a certain amount of business and all of a sudden it goes away, it becomes something you have to think about a lot and just don’t let it drag you down,” said Parmer.