PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Philadelphia police are stepping up patrols in the city this Fourth of July weekend. Business owners say they are glad to see the increased police presence for themselves and their customers.
Police say they will increase patrols in areas where people normally gather, along with places that had issues in the past. Business owners CBS3 spoke with say they are grateful for the extra security -- from South Street to Old City.
Philadelphia is the birthplace of American Independence. It is expected to be a busy Fourth of July holiday weekend.
The police department says it is ready for the crowds. A department spokesperson tells CBS3 it is beefing up patrols.
"I think that's what we need, is we need police, more police on the street," Michelle Zimmerman, co-owner of Las Bugambilias, said.
The family business has been around for 15 years, offering a colorful, vibrant atmosphere and traditional Mexican dishes and margaritas in Old City.
"And you would think that this area should be safe because we are not far from Independence Hall, we're only a couple blocks away from our national treasures," Zimmerman said. "So we think that we should be protected in this neighborhood."
A little over a year ago, the restaurant moved from South Street to South 3rd Street in Old City. Zimmerman says it hasn't been an easy transition.
"We've had a lot of problems since we have been inhere. We had break-ins. We have been broken into about six times," Zimmerman said. "It's very frustrating and it's very costly."
CBS3 also stopped by South Street, not far from where the mass shooting unfolded back on June 4, killing three and injuring 12.
"We are looking forward, hoping this street can be a little safer so people can come here and visit us," Mohan Parmar, owner of Lovash Indian Kitchen, said.
He has been serving up Indian Cuisine on South Street for 28 years. He said he is finally starting to see people coming back and hopes the police pressure stays long after the holiday weekend.
The majority of the patrolling will be focused at night.
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