BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — When you turn onto Allen Street Monday, you'll see construction underway. It's been in the works over three years and to tune of five million dollars, "The Allen Street Reconstruction Project Phase I" will upgrade utilities, lighting, widen the road, add trees and change sidewalks.
"There's been a lot of rumors going on, so I'm excited for it to start," Larisa Tivador said. She lives close-by and frequents Allen Street since she moved to Buffalo four years ago.
"It may suck for a little while because it will be closed for some time, but after that, I think it will be great."
Phase I will focus on block-by-block reconstruction of Allen from Main to Delaware.
"We've built in a two year construction schedule to make sure we have the time to work through all the construction that we need to do that minimally impacts the businesses," Michael Finn, Buffalo Department of Public Works Acting Commissioner, said.
Starting Monday, March 11th, prep work will begin for major utility work, including a new waterline. By late April, streets between Main and Delaware on Allen will be closed block-by-block, four to six weeks at a time. The first block to close to traffic is between Main and North Pearl.
"Something has to be done, but if it was up to me they would've never done it," Owner of Rick Cycle Shop, Tom Azzarella, said. His shop sits on the second block that will close during the project. He says the street shutdown will impact his busiest season from April to June and thinks, aside from fixing utility issues, things look fine.
"It hasn't started, but I'm hoping it gets delayed," Azzarella said.
Across the street, is Giacobbi's where outlook on the project differs.
"A couple of months is not a big deal in the long run, so we'll deal with it for the construction and then after hopefully we'll get a bounce back from it," Manager Alex Jaccobi said.
After Phase I, the hope is to begin Phase Two, which would stretch from Delaware to Wadsworth on Allen.
"It's on the table and the city is looking to all sources for funding," Finn said.