Venice under construction

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Live in Venice? Expect big changes coming to your popular shopping district.

Eastbound lanes of West Venice Ave, between Harbor Drive and U.S. 41 are closing making room for new sidewalks and landscaping.

Fred Marino, owner of The Soda Fountain says the renovations are good and bad.

“The problem with it is, how they’re doing it, they’re shutting down the shops; the sidewalks and everything. And a lot of our business here on the off season is the foot traffic,” said Marino.

Yenny Lopez, manager of the Resort Style Store is not thrilled with the shutdown either.

“Now is that going to affect us? Maybe a little bit because uh we’re afraid people will be discouraged, and not wanting to walk around while they’re doing that,” said Lopez.

Businesses say they expect to lose customers from the lane closures but that renovations are essential.

“It’s welcome, and I know it’s needed, and the more prettier the city looks, I guess the more people would like to come and see it,” said Lopez.

“Ya the road needs to be done sooner or later you know, the problem is exactly when to do it. You know if they did it more at the nighttime, and worked at night hours, and then kind of opened it up for the day businesses, I think that would be a lot better.” said Marino.

The City recommends using West Miami or West Tampa avenues as detours.