CLINTON HILL - Construction is underway on a 25,000-square-foot pedestrian plaza on Myrtle Avenue, but as the work drags on, local shops say they are losing business.
Terry Unchali, owner of Brooklyn Family Dental, says it all started about a year ago when he would get last-minute notices that the water would be shut off. No water meant no patients and no business for Unchali.
"We lost a lot of clients because of this, people didn't return to our office because of this," said Unchali.
For the last year, other businesses have been feeling the burden of the construction. They say it has led to less foot traffic and some businesses were even forced to close their doors.
"You can look around, you can see there are a lot of businesses that have closed their doors as a result," said Alain Farrelly the owner of local shop Brooklyn Grind.
The Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership has been trying ease some of the pain of construction by putting up signs on sidewalks and storefronts all along the avenue to attract customers. But the partnership says the city needs to step up.
"Weathering the storm of construction has been challenging and we just want to make sure we're doing everything we can and that the city is doing everything they can to mitigate those impacts," said Meredith Phillips Almeida, of the Myrtle Avenue Brooklyn Partnership.
On Friday, City Comptroller Scott Stringer stopped by the Myrtle Avenue construction site to hear business owners' concerns. Stringer says that he wants to put an end to all of the red tape that goes along with working with city agencies.
"These projects have to be on time, they have to be on budget and they can't impact all of the businesses in a negative way that they will close," said Stringer.
News 12 reached out to the agency responsible for the project, the City Department of Design and Construction, but has yet to hear back.