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Businesses along Denver's 16th Street Mall struggling amid construction

Businesses along the 16th Street Mall struggling amid construction
Businesses along the 16th Street Mall struggling amid construction 02:14

Jayanth Sashi has been doing eyebrows and facials on the 16th Street Mall in Denver for five years now. She says business never really picked up after the COVID pandemic for her because this is a tough place to get to.

Jayanth Sashi CBS

"No parking area already before here in downtown and after is a construction work," said Sashi.

She says construction on the mall has really hurt her income. She has been able to survive off her regular customers, but she no longer gets walk-ins.

"Not a new customer anymore because of no more tourists coming here because tourists don't like this," said Sashi.


She's not alone. Many businesses up and down the mall have all kinds of signs and gimmicks to get people to come to their shops. Those are the lucky ones. There are also many empty storefronts.

One business told me their revenue is down 50% year to year. Sashi blames the construction.


"It is like a more long-time construction. (It) continues but not finished. I don't know why," said Sashi.

Now, she is bracing for even more losses.


RTD closed the light rail stations surrounding her shop to work on the lines. 

The project is slated to be finished in September, but Sashi says she and her fellow business owners need some relief, and doesn't understand why all of this is taking so long.

"16th street mall is like a tourist area, a main traveling tourist area, but what's left now?" asks Sashi.

Businesses say summertime is the busiest time of the year for them on 16th Street. They're hoping that a busy tourist season will help keep them afloat. 

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