Gary Bagnall
Gary Bagnall John Gass

Mayor’s business struggles as roadworks continue

MURWILLUMBAH CBD businesses reporting a decline in customers due to roadworks include the eatery owned by the mayor of Tweed Shire Council.

Mayor Gary Bagnall, who owns New Leaf Cafe, said for three days this week he took two hospitality staff off the roster and he had lost about 25% in daily takings.

"Some owners have predicted their businesses might fail," he said.

Style 2484's Kylie Dunn said her retail fashion store has remained quiet during what was supposed to be a busy shopping period.

But Wright's Dry Cleaning's Leigh Boorman said her dry cleaning business had not been affected.

"I've got work coming with spring and the weddings and the formals and we are swamped, it has not affected us negatively at all," she said.

Reprieve is on the way for the businesses affected, with the council expected to move the work site into the western part of the CBD early next week.

Part of a concrete road laid as a job creation scheme in the Great Depression was uncovered on the first day of work.

To comply with heritage legislation, the council stopped work and brought in its consultant archaeologist to document and photograph the road before proceeding.

Workers laid five pipes a day against a target of two due to good site conditions, construction engineer Nigel Dobson said.

"We are currently backfilling the first stage of works so we can leap-frog our machinery up the street," he said.

"We'll then lay the water reticulation pipes and optic fibre cable at about a one-metre depth, backfill again, move our site fencing and reopen that part of the road behind us.

"This will also see the pedestrian crossing outside Palm Court reopened."

The council thanked the community for its support.

"If we continue to get such great community support for our workers and the CBD businesses, which are all open, we will maximise our progress with minimal impact on trade," Mr Dobson said.

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