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Construction on North Main in High Point hurts businesses over holidays

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HIGH POINT, N.C. -- Construction is progressing on North Main Street in High Point. The city is in the second month of a six-month project to replace old infrastructure.

The city council decided to close the entire street to speed the project up by several months, but local businesses say the closure during the holiday shopping season has hurt them financially.

"We finished off December at about a 40 percent decline from last year," said Tim Fogarty, co-owner of Smith and Whitely Music.

His neighbor at Sumela Restaurant says they are also seeing a decline. "We've been doing a third to 40 percent down from our regular business," said Mehmet Cakal, owner of the restaurant.

Across the street at Huffman Paint and Wallcoverings, owner Kerry Jones says so far he hasn't seen a major decline. But what he's worried about is his business in the spring.

"Come Feb. 15 we will have all the furniture market customers that come into town that do the showroom work and they've got to find us, because if they don't, they may end up somewhere else and they may not come back," Jones said.

The city has done several things to try and lessen the impact on businesses, including putting up signage and buying ads in the local paper. A city official said they are also working on doing a video campaign over social media profiling each business.