Small business works to bounce back after Cecil Ashburn closure, COVID-19


HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – When Cecil Ashburn Drive closed completely in 2019, small businesses like A&V Seafood Market say it was harder to retain customers. Now that all 4 lanes of the road are completely reopened, the owner said she anticipates bigger and better business.

Vicki Tran has owned and operated her business for nearly a decade, and said when the main road closed many of her customers stopped shopping with her.

“When the road closed it hurt our business. A lot,” she said.

Thursday, city officials said the road’s completion caught the eye of some major corporation and thanked the local shops for withstanding the construction.

“We certainly appreciate the small busineses in the area on both sides of the mountain. Their patience and the community’s,” said Shane Davis, Director of Urban and Economic Development with the City of Huntsville.

But not every business survived the improvements, like Tran’s former neighbor Moe’s Barbecue.

She said with construction plus the recent effects of COVID-19, her business has been hanging on by a thread.

But there’s been one thing keeping them afloat.

“We are just a family working, so that’s why we are still here.”

Tran said if they had any external employees, her market might’ve sank.

However, she’s looking forward to the road access causing a boost in her customer base.

“We need some support from everywhere, everyone come on over,” she added.

Cecil Ashburn has only been completely open for about twenty four hours and Tran said she is already seeing a pick up in store traffic.

The store owner said throughout the obstacles of construction and COVID-19, her family made sure not to sacrifice the quality of their services because of temporary challenges. She encourages all area businesses to do the same.

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