Tuesday, June 25, 2024

As construction near 58th and Washington continues, beloved small business struggles to stay afloat

Must read

DENVER — As construction near E. 58th Avenue and Washington Street continues, a small convenience store and sandwich shop is struggling to stay afloat.

Kasem Ahadi’s family has owned the Mapleton Deli at that intersection for more than 20 years. It was once a thriving business, with regulars and new customers lining up outside of the door to get their hands on one of Ahadi’s subs or gyros.

Denver7

Mapleton Deli

However, that all began changing in August 2022.

That’s when Adams County began the East 58th Avenue from Washington to York Improvement project.

58th construction 1.jpg

Denver7

Construction on East 58th between Washington and York

“The project entails widening and making infrastructure, accessibility, and drainage improvements along East 58th Avenue from Washington to York,” the Adams County website reads. “Other work includes intersection upgrades at Franklin and relocating utilities and water facilities. The work will be phased, but phasing will overlap.”

Watch the video below to see the current construction zone.

Current construction zone: East 58th Avenue from Washington to York Improvement project

Since construction in the area began, the Mapleton Deli has been surrounded by orange cones, signs, and construction equipment. Ahadi attributes all of those factors to the loss of business inside of the deli shop, saying those who eventually do make it inside regularly tell him it’s too hard to access.

“We lost almost 85% of our business,” he said. “We (had) a great business before (the) construction.”

Signs that warn about the 58th Avenue closure have hurt his business, he said. Many times, drivers tell him they don’t even bother going near his business to avoid the construction.

“Right now, we lost all of them,” he said.

The project’s anticipated completion date is May 2025, but Ahadi said he’s not sure his family’s business can survive another year of continued construction.

“The only things we have right now — just our neighbors and the people they know us,” he said.

That’s where Zach Utting and his coworkers come in. Utting has worked at AVI Roofing, which is within walking distance of the Mapleton Deli. He has been a loyal customer of Ahadi’s for at least two years.

He and his coworkers banded together recently to get Ahadi as much business as possible, stopping in as many times a day as they can to try to help the deli survive.

“I know for my shop in particular, me and my co-workers, we come here three to four times a day,” Utting said. “We buy everything from our Red Bulls in the morning to our lunches and any of the over-the-counter products we may need for the day.”

58th construction 3.jpg

Denver7

Traffic cones, construction signs on East 58th Avenue

Mapleton Deli isn’t the only business in the area that has dealt with a loss of customers because of the construction. An Adams County spokesperson said the county is working on developing a grant program to help struggling businesses with additional signage, marketing, and communication that will assist businesses in letting the public know how to access them during construction projects.

Though, at this point, Ahadi said his business needs a solution fast.

“We are hoping to finish this street quickly, so we can go back to the cycle, you know,” he said. “Regular business.”

Small business struggles as construction near 58th and Washington continues


D7 follow up bar 2460x400FINAL.png

The Follow Up

What do you want Denver7 to follow up on? Is there a story, topic or issue you want us to revisit? Let us know with the contact form below.

Latest article