Business owners in Alice Street, Merimbula are angry they had no warning about road works that closed the entire street to traffic on Tuesday morning, September 10.
Michelle Pearson, who owns The Bakehouse in Alice Street said: “When I tried to park at 6.55am the road was closed at both ends but there had been no letter or warning.”
Ms Pearson is also concerned about the quality of workmanship which includes tar spraying around a parked vehicle and not filling holes prior to resealing.
Alice Street and the RSL car park was being resealed by Bega Valley Shire Council contractors, Downer but the company appears to have told only three businesses in the Alice Street area that the road would be closed.
The Merimbula Seafood shop was told late Monday afternoon, September 9, Camping Plus Australia was informed by phone at about 2pm on Monday and the RSL Club was told that the work would be carried out.
But Ms Pearson said: “Only three businesses out of 25, which included those in the arcades and upstairs, were told.”
She said that normally in her business by late morning many more cakes and bread would have been sold. “I’ve got no passing trade, no access road, my elderly customers can’t park and I’ve had to find alternative parking for myself and a lot of that is short-term but I can’t leave the shop because I’m the only one in here.”
Marc Rosevear, owner of office services company, SOS, was equally annoyed with the lack of notification.
“We were not contacted, there was nothing. It’s making our day difficult. We’ve got a fleet of five vehicles. We’re supposed to be able to load photo copiers in and out of cars. We’ve had to do a number of foot trips to load up the cars. I know these things have to be done but a little bit of heads up would help,” Mr Rosevear said.
Ms Pearson called the episode a “failure to consult” and Mr Rosevear pointed out that when the roads in Bega were resurfaced it was advertised in local newspapers and on radio and carried out at weekends.
Cheryl Chaplin, director at Merimbula Home Nursing said that their elderly and infirm clients had been impacted as other people had taken the available car parking spaces.
“Notification would have been great. No one actually advised us. Everyone is parking in our parking spots and so it’s making it difficult for our clients,” Ms Chaplin said.
Kerry Gibbons at Camping Plus Australia was one of the three businesses that was informed about the road works the day before but she said that originally she had been told the work would be finished by 10am and then “they backtracked and said it would be 12 noon”.
Ms Pearson said that she would be writing to council to complain about the lack of communication with local businesses. Her letter is published on Page 6.
Councillor Russell Fitzpatrick agreed that businesses should have been informed and promised to find out what the normal procedure should be.