Berry Street’s third of four construction phases is on track to be completed by the end of December.
The Berry Street Initiative will provide a street facelift, including narrowing of the streets, on-street parking, widened sidewalks, enhanced crosswalks and medians, roadway and pedestrian lighting, street furniture, trees and landscaping, said Arty Wheaton-Rodriguez, senior planner for the Fort Worth Planning and Development Department.
The fourth and final phase should end construction on the current stretch of Berry Street by April 2013, Wheaton-Rodriguez said.
As of November, from University Drive to Lubbock Avenue there are four lanes going east and west with the median under construction between them. Drivers cannot switch directions until the end of the construction zone.
“Construction always affects the businesses that are around it because people either one try to avoid it or two try to get through the area as quick as possible,” Wheaton-Rodriguez said.
Signs near Lubbock Avenue lead customers to back streets and around construction to get to local businesses.
TCU area Which Wich owner Shannon Darrah said the construction hasn’t hurt her business, and that the city of Fort Worth is being very cooperative and eager to help.
“As far as affecting business, no, because I think we have such a good stronghold as far as Which Wich is concerned, but I think it does have to make people think twice about how they’re going to get here,” Darrah said.
Wheaton-Rodriguez said phase three is the easiest and least obtrusive phase of construction, but the final phase will tear up the south side of Berry Street near Fuzzy’s Taco Shop and 7-Eleven.
By April, Wheaton-Rodriguez said he hopes Berry Street will have wider sidewalks, safer crosswalks and more greenery similar to the streetscape on the east side of Berry Street.
“Do I think it’s going to increase business? No. I think it just might create a nicer way to get here, so it’s a lot of work for aesthetics purposes,” Darrah said.