The Modo Yoga studio has operated in Griffintown for two years now, but over the last few months, its clientele has slowly shrunk because of parking problems.
“It’s terrible for our business,” said manager Dana Samuel. “We have had people cancel memberships saying they can’t find parking, [they] can’t take a membership here.”
Businesses in Griffintown are just the latest in Montreal to complain that lengthy condo and road construction problems are hurting their bottom lines.
Modo Yoga manager Samuel complains the problems in the area are twofold. First, ongoing road and condo construction has caused blockages and detours everywhere.
“There is tonnes of construction,” Samuel said. “There is no parking, there are no parking lots in the area.”
The other issue is restrictive city parking, leaving fewer spots for non-residents.
“I have to come 45 minutes before the class starts so I can start looking around for parking,” said yoga class attendee Lawrence Miglialo.
WATCH: (Nov. 14, 2018) Montreal offers compensation to business owners
The situation could get worse this summer — that’s when the city plans to rip up parts of William Street, making the area even harder to get to.
“Now, it has gotten to the point of pure insanity,” said Dan Geltner.
Geltner runs Le Kitchen cafe and catering business on William Street. Normally, the café sets up a terrace on the sidewalk.
The city denied them a permit this summer because of planned construction. He thinks officials could do more to help.
“Instead of closing a street for a whole day when already there is no parking, give us a break during the summer and let people park,” said Geltner.
The city says it has a program in place to compensate businesses during construction, but many locals also want parking restrictions eased and taxes reduced.
Gabriel Chauvin just opened a bagel shop, Le Trou, on William Street. With the city ripping up the road in front of his shop, he’s worried about this summer.
“I think it will last two or three months. That is what they told us,” Chauvin said.
“But definitely for a new business that has been open for three months, it’s not easy.”
Chauvin and others in the area are hoping Montrealers are just so used to construction, they’ll come anyway.
© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.