Ingersoll shops anxious for construction to end

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DES MOINES, Iowa — For drivers and businesses along Ingersoll Avenue, it’s felt like construction has gone on a long time. It’s had a different impact on each business.

“Everyone has to walk little bit further from their parking spot to get in here, but we operate on appointments so we’re pretty fortunate we’re not too affected by this,” said Travis Aust of Loyal Sons Barber Shop. “We’re hoping that it’s cleared up before the snow comes and people have to trek through all the ice.”

At Boesen the Florist, there’s been no real problems. They are looking forward to a nice new road when construction ends. At Manhattan Deli, it was a busy Friday, but they believe the road closure has caused some slower days. At Lovan Salon + Spa, they moved to Ingersoll in June, and construction started in August.

“It’s been difficult because not only have we been informing our clients about the new location, but now we’re telling them how to move around and get in here, and sometimes our parking lot is blocked so they have to be forced to park in the street a few blocks away,” said Courtney Wolfe, owner of Lovan Salon + Spa.

Another new business is Renovation Jungle, which offers all types of houseplants for sale.

“It’s really hitting us hard the last couple months just now that 37th [Street] is fully blocked off and you’re not able to access on the street here that we have our business,” said Allie Delaney, owner of Renovation Jungle. “If there are any construction workers watching right now that are working on the project, don’t slow down to spite us. We appreciate you, just wrap it up for me. Let’s get it done.”

Another business counting on walk-in traffic is Preservation, which specializes in vintage clothing.

“I think it’s just really hard for people to get here,” said Nicole Trower, owner of Preservation. “People don’t need things from our store. People stop by for fun or out of convenience, and this isn’t convenient.”

Trower is thankful for an online store to help with sales. Businesses in this area have been told to expect construction until Thanksgiving.

Construction phases

In an email from Christopher Kuhl, Civil Engineer with the City of Des Moines, he laid out the phases of Ingersoll construction:

Phase 1 (north side form MLK to 24th St) was substantially completed last year and the final contract amount was $2.6 million.

Phase 2 (north side from 24th St to 28th St) of the project is still scheduled to be substantially complete this fall and opened up to traffic around Thanksgiving. Phase 2 has a current contract amount of 3.2 million.

Phase 3 (MLK all the way to 28th on the south side) is anticipated to be under construction next summer with an anticipated construction cost of $7.6 million.

Phase 4 (28th St to 31st) is tentatively scheduled to be under construction in 2023 with a construction cost of $2 million. Most of the streetscape planters are already in this phase so it’ll be a matter of replacing the street pavement and installing the red raised cycle tracks and associated items.

There is a website with more detailed information about what’s going on along Ingersoll Avenue.

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