Manville Hill road bridge closing is creating hardships for local businesses

 By John Guice

    The opening of the Manville Hill road bridge in Cumberland has now been pushed back to April.

When safety concerns shut down the bridge last December, it was supposed to re–open this month.

 The delay is a nightmare for local businesses. Business owners on both sides of the Manville Hill road bridge are taking a financial hit, since the DOT closed the bridge in December due to safety concerns.

   Greg Moreau is the owner of 4 corners fitness center. He says ,they were promised that the bridge would re–open in February. He's lost 33 percent of his business because now that the bridge is closed. People go elsewhere.Greg says,” now, they go different routes from home to work or from work to home, so there's gyms within those routes, so we lose those people”

     Some businesses have closed all together. Dazzled consignments on Manville Hill Road , shut its doors .The business owner saying, the bridge closing made a difficult decision easier. Other businesses have reduced their hours. People who depend on the bridge traffic saying there's only one way to stop the slide in their businesses, to re-open the bridge.District 45 representative Mia Ackerman is pushing for a temporary solution, like re-opening the bridge to one lane of traffic. DOT officials say they will not re-open the bridge in until safety concerns are addressed and construction should start in a few weeks.