South Street businesses grapple with police presence and road closures affecting business

Security on South Street has been enhanced in the wake of recent violence, including a mass shooting. The community is divided over how long the extra safety measures should last.

It’s Thursday and the sign for meet me on South Street is the business outside.

“This is an invitation to come and see our vibrant community,” said Dana Feinberg.

The goal is to attract more customers, with the promise of discounts every Thursday to kickstart the weekend business. Feinberg works in the South Street headquarters area. “Help people realize that there are new businesses opening every week on South Street and the surrounding area,” she said.

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However, there are actually some roadblocks that might keep customers away. In fact, countless metal barricades line the streets, ready to control and cut off traffic.

“There’s definitely been an uptick in security since the shooting,” said O’Neal’s pub owner Spony O’Neal, referring to the closure of streets on certain days and times, as well as the June shooting that left two people dead and ten The police presence increased after several people were injured.

“Do I sometimes think there are too many police here? Yes. Will it stop people from coming here? Yes,” he said.

Then there are street closures. “We’re stuck, people can’t even get to us,” O’Neal said.

Samantha Shaw owns Sam Shaw’s Treatery. “There is no doubt that it does slow down,” Xiao said. When safety measures are largely in place here, she won’t be open late like bars and restaurants. However, she will be open during Meet Me on South Street on Thursday.

“There should be a presence here. Does it have to be overloaded to the point where you stop people from leaving? I don’t think so. There has to be some middle ground somewhere,” she said.

Police would not say how long the enhanced security measures on South Street will last, saying only that they will continue to work with the Headhouse District Business Association and the community to ensure a safe environment.

For a list of all participating businesses and featured promotions, visit the Meet Me on South Street website.

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