Gas mains work on Holderness Road 'will hit trade'
BUSINESSES claim they will be hit by weeks of roadworks while gas mains are upgraded.
Northern Gas Networks will begin carrying out the work from today as part of a project to replace old cast-iron pipes with more durable plastic ones.
About 340m of pipes, from Holderness Road's junction with Wilton Street to its junction with Abbey Street, will be replaced.
Shop workers say it is the "worst possible time" for the work to be carried out as they prepare for the Christmas countdown.
Elaine Webster, a shop assistant at Witham Glass in Holderness Road, said they will lose a lot of passing trade.
She said: "It's likely people will avoid coming to shop in this area and last time we lost quite a bit of business.
"We still have people ringing up to place orders but we rely on shoppers coming into the showroom."
The work will be carried out by engineers from Balfour Beatty and will take six to eight weeks.
To enable it to be done safely, there will be a suspension of the eastbound bus lane along Holderness Road.
The scheme will also require a temporary closure of the junction at Wilton Street and Holderness Road for about two weeks, with signs for motorists in place.
Hull VAC has its new showroom near where the roadworks will take place.
Director Steve Randle said: "We've been open about five months now and business is going well at the new store.
"We had a visit about the roadworks and received a letter telling us it wouldn't affect us. We just hope this is true."
A spokesman for Northern Gas Networks said, aside from the brief closure of the junction at Abbey Street, the work should not have a negative impact on local traders.
He said: "Most of the work is taking place in the bus lane, with pedestrian and car access unaffected.
"Businesses have all had letters from us and our team has been out and about speaking to traders to make them aware of the work.
"We can assure businesses that everything will be done to minimise inconvenience.
"All work will be completed before the Christmas trading period.
"This work will ensure the gas mains in the are safer and more reliable for decades to come. Investing now means we can prevent the disruption of pipe repairs in the years ahead."
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