Downtown merchants meet with construction company

Columbiana merchants recently met with Mayor Allan Lowe to express concerns over

the closing of the intersection of College Street and Main Street for about a month as part of the downtown renovation project.

The merchants selected Skipper Smith of Smith Project Management Services in Columbiana to serve as a spokesperson for the group in an informal meeting held at city hall last Friday.

Smith was chosen in a prior gathering of merchants at Bernie & Charlie’s Restaurant.

He urged Lowe to meet with R.E. Grills officials to discuss ways to keep from closing the intersection.

As company officials were unavailable for the Friday meeting, Lowe called for another meeting which was set for 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 23, after presstime, with Gresham, Smith & Partners and

R.E. Grills representatives and merchants.

According to the contract that Grills has with the city, the intersection may be closed at any time if there is a safety issue.

Susan Conn of Main Street Florist said since Aug. 1, downtown renovation has cost her 47 percent of her walk-in business.

She said the merchandise on display in the front of her shop must be paid for.

However, she said, overall her business was doing well