Northern Tower Avenue, which is the section of Tower Ave north of Belknap Street, went under construction in April and re-opened October 22.
Tower is considered the business district of Superior and many of the businesses rely on walk-in customers. Before the construction, the sidewalks were brick in the closer part to Belknap and the rest was always dirty. It wasn’t often you saw many people walking on that street during the day. The street is also home to many of Superiors bars.
Globe News is at the corner of Belknap and Tower. I asked if the construction had affected their business. “Yes, definitely,” said owner Tom Unterberger. “Absolutely negative, A lot of the tourists couldn’t park anywhere. Our regulars know you can park across the street, but tourists didn’t.” Unterberger hopes the new street will bring in my tourists.
Other businesses with their own parking lots seemed to not be effected too negatively by the construction.
“It didn’t really affect us,” said Dane Bushey, employee of Third Base bar.
Walking on Tower on October 22, it looked like more than half the businesses had closed their doors. We can’t say why or how long these businesses have been out of business but there are a depressing amount of empty shop windows. It seems that if businesses had a parking lot, they did just fine, but if they relied on walk-in customers they didn’t do as well.
Denise Colzer at V.I.P Pizza thinks the construction will bring more business to the street. “It looks beautiful.” Said Colzer
Taking a closer look the street still seems to require some minor improvements. Trees and other plants will be added in the spring. Benches will be added in the next few weeks, and Christmas decorations and lights have already been put up. Tower hosts large festive snowflakes at the top of every light post.
Anna Lopel-Krueger at Engwall Wolffs Flower Shop said the construction affected them as well “[the construction] affected us a little bit but we are fortunate enough that we have parking in the back and a back door our customers know to use. We kept the front door open as long as we could until we had a 16 foot hole at our front door.”
She also talked about how Superior is bringing a face-lift to down-town, especially doing what they can on their end to make businesses look more presentable. UWS Student Jim Kummer thinks North Tower resembles Canal Park and the down-town areas of other cities around the area.
Residents of Superior say they are glad to see this heavily traveled street back open, and the local businesses are too. This area already feels more like a down-town area that Superior seems to have been needed.