An Aberdeen restaurateur has warned road closures around his premises could “finish off” the business.
Custom at Michael Pergl’s Aperitivo in Bon Accord Street has fallen drastically since the city’s second lockdown, and since the road was closed at its junction with Union Street.
Matters got worse, Mr Pergl claimed, after entrance to Bon Accord Terrace from the granite mile and Justice Mill Lane from Holburn Street was also ruled out.
The road changes came as part of the £1.76 million physical distancing project in the city, under the guise of Spaces For People.
Funded by a government grant, the work is designed to make room for people to safely walk, queue and cycle in the streets and also to encourage active travel.
The space created by the closure at the top of Bon Accord Street has been occupied by nearby hospitality businesses, while a cycle lane has been installed in Justice Mill Lane.
Business owners have warned of the need for customers to take a miles-long diversion around the closure if they are to return.
A popular street with many nightspots, Justice Mill Lane and adjoining Langstane Place have already started to bear the brunt of the hospitality curfew and ban on background music in pubs.
Just this week, Dusk announced its closure and previously Nox nightclub went the same way.
Mr Pergl said the combination of the restrictions on hospitality and the roads upheaval left him worried the bustling little community a stone’s throw from the city’s main thoroughfare would collapse.
He told The P&J: “This definitely has the potential to kill the businesses in this area.
“You can already see it with Dusk, and others have given themselves until this weekend.
“They are worried they will most likely shut the doors by Saturday if not able to make enough money to survive.
“As part of the Galleria Centre, I know how difficult it has been for shops to attract customers because there is no way to get here from Union Street.”
The council has visited the area to hear from concerned business owners about the lack of access.
Early last month council chief capital officer John Wilson promised a review, with potential for change in Bon Accord Terrace.
Businesses have complained about hearing little since.
Torry And Ferryhill SNP councillor Audrey Nicoll last night said: “For some local businesses, this could be difference between staying open and closing down.
“Those who are affected by this and struggling to stay afloat will rightfully feel hard done by.”
Council transport spokeswoman Sandra Macdonald did not respond to request for comment yesterday.