Traders concerned tram works could be bad for business in Chilwell and Beeston
TRADERS fear plans to close a road through Beeston and Chilwell for up to a year to allow for tram construction works could leave business in "chaos".
Owners of shops along Chilwell Road, Beeston, and High Road, Chilwell, met with tram bosses last night to discuss the impending closures, with one claiming they should receive compensation for lost earnings.
The roads will shut so utilities, such as underground gas pipes, can be moved ahead of the new tram line being installed.
Firms say the original plan was for a one-way system to be in place for 18 months, but they have now been told the road will be closed completely from around March.
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The meeting between traders and tram bosses took place at Latino restaurant, in Chilwell Road, Beeston.
During the meeting, bosses from the Taylor Woodrow Alstom consortium, which will be doing the work, said the revised plan would be beneficial because it was over a shorter period than the original proposal and would be safer for the public and workmen.
However one of the traders said: "This is our lives, you needed to come to us and everyone in this room to ask what we need before now."
Another called for substantial compensation and said: "You have got to appreciate if you close the road completely it's going to affect us."
The closures will be between Middle Street and Ellis Grove for six months, and then from Ellis Grove to Holly Lane for another six months from September 2013, with buses being diverted during that time.
Julie Cameron, who runs gift and homeware shop Cameron House, in Chilwell Road, Beeston, said: "When the tram is completed they will need businesses down here. It's no good having a fabulous tram if there are no businesses there."
Ms Cameron, who is vice-chairman of the Beeston Business Improvement District, added: "My business is seasonal and I have already ordered stock for Easter and Mother's Day. I do not know how I can plan my business around the chaos.
"I hope it doesn't put people out of business."
Chris Deas, project director at the city council, said the plans would be finalised over the coming months and said: "The works are coming and I think it will be better to work together. I'm committed to working with you."