TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Brewing up a cup of coffee became a little harder for Exo Roast Co. on 6th Avenue.
“It’s sort of like [COVID-19] and construction — the two C’s. They’re both pretty hard to handle,” said Amy Smith, co-owner.
Construction began in August on 6th Avenue to install an underground box culvert, according to the City of Tucson’s department of transportation and mobility. It’s not expected to be complete until March of next year.
Smith knew construction would happen, she just didn’t know when.
“It was quite a surprise that it was going to come during the time that we were already dealing with so many uncertainties with [COVID-19]. I would say that along with everything else, it really pushed us to be creative,” said Smith.
She said she can’t quantify the exact impact between the two obstacles, but knows it’s been extreme.
“We were a much bigger business before [COVID-19]. We were a bar, we are a music venue,[and] we are a restaurant. So, now we’re going back to our roots, which is just coffee,” said Smith.
Smith said there are silver linings to the construction.
One is that she can take advantage of the extra outdoor space for the next five months.
“We plan to have a lot of special events and special events that get people out in the street and join our community again. Also, those special events will help nonprofits,” she said.
She tells the community not to let the orange cones fool them.
“During the pandemic and during road construction just support Fourth Avenue [and] support Sixth Avenue. Keep coming downtown,” she said.
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