Downtown Restaurants Suffer Following Frigid Weather, Pipe Problems
Some downtown Columbus businesses are struggling to get back to normal after the arctic blast and a massive water main break.
Some restaurant owners say they were already saddled with a slow holiday season and were hoping to bounce back this month.
It's been a couple of difficult days for restaurant owner Guillermo Perez.
He says on Monday he closed his doors to his shop, Si Senor, because of bitter weather. Then, there was a large water main burst in downtown Columbus. It happened just a block from his shop.
"I was really concerned if that wasn't going to be fixed on time, you know, what would happen today to all the businesses around here," said Perez.
As soon as that one was fixed, he was faced with pipe problems of his own. He says his own pipes burst.
On Tuesday, the sign saying they were closed went back on the front door and the maintenance man was hard at work.
As of Tuesday, Perez still didn't have water, but was hopeful it would soon return.
"Everything gets affected. You know, we have to be very careful with food costs. You have to be very careful with staff, sometimes you have to send people home," said Perez.
While Si Senor closed because its pipes froze, a restaurant down the street closed early because it was simply too cold outside for people to come in.
"Same bills that we have to pay every day, every month and the employees are wanting to work, but our revenue is down 60% yesterday and another 50% today," said Lexi's On Third owner, Dan Georges.
The business is usually bustling with people, but Tuesday evening it was empty.
"It kind of gets scary because you have your, the normal food cost already is high," said Georges.
Georges says he's trying to stay afloat and hopes better weather will bring better business.
"I guess that's why they say you have to save some for a rainy day, or a snowy, or icy, or cold day," said Georges.
On top of the bitter cold, there's still a layer of ice in the part of downtown Columbus where a water main broke.