Hastings businesses frustrated with Highway 6 construction
HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Highway 6, otherwise known as “J Street,” construction in Hastings is causing trouble for some businesses along its route, and it’s not exactly because of the traffic.
The construction has been ongoing for approximately 15 months, but with more recent changes in the roadwork, Jay Beckby, owner of Beckby’s Motors said their business is inaccessible from the highway.
Beckby told Local4 News the Nebraska Department of Transportation had initially told him the blockage would only last a month, but it’s been more than two months now.
He noted, it’s dramatically impacted his business as the construction is making it difficult for customers to find the alternative route to get to their building.
Beckby said his business was not the only one being impacted either.
“No business on this road can survive much longer with this type of situation going on and all I would do is implore the State of Nebraska, or whoever the powers it be, to come in here and finish this road, and get us back open so we can be a viable part of the community,” he said.
Beckby added, the construction has ultimately brought down their monthly revenue about 80% in the past 60 days. While the dealership remains accessible through gravel road, K Street, Beckby said many customers are unaware of the alternate route.
He also said that he’d spoken with the owner of neighboring business, Dykeman’s Camper Place/Hastings Motor Sales, who told him they were feeling the impacts of their driveway being cut off from the highway as well.
Erin Klein, District 4 Construction Engineer with NDOT, told Local4 News he has heard of only a few complaints from businesses being affected by the construction.
“People are trying to use these businesses on a daily basis, and having to, you know, go out of their way to enter them is a frustration to them and the business owners and, there’s a couple we were hoping to get open sooner but, the way the traffic patterns turned out, we didn’t think it was safe to open a couple of them as soon as we’d hoped, just for the safety of the rest of the public on Highway 6,” Klein said.
Klein also said construction crews were making some final touches, and the highway was expected to fully reopen in September.
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