• Business owners concerned about 'devastating' impact of I-85 collapse

    By: Nicole Carr


    ATLANTA - Many businesses are trying to figure out how to operate under a new normal caused by the Interstate 85 fire and bridge collapse. 

    Tony Jay from Looks of Atlanta on Piedmont Road said since the collapse on Friday, his business has dropped 90 percent. He said the store usually sees 40 to 50 people a day, but they have only seen three or four in the days since the fire.

    "It's devastating," he said. "What do we do?"

    He said he's looked into getting a temporary lease in another location, but has been unsuccessful.

    [PHOTOS: I-85 bridge collapse aftermath]

    Jay said he is worried about his employees. 

    "They need a job. They can't just pick up and make what they're used to making," he said.

    Businesses further away from the collapse are also feeling the imapct.

    An Avis rental car lot in Lawrenceville is empty and cut off from receiving new inventory. 

    "Kind of puts a damper on trying to transport cars in and out of the city," employee Louis Morgan said.

    Workers are trying to find a way around the issue in order to operate their business. 

    "Maybe just send them to the airport and then once they're there and picking up their car, we'll try to compensate them accordingly," Morgan said. 

    Morgan said they are relying on business partnerships to get extra inventory and hope that rentals due back Saturday will make it one time. 

    Other business owners near the site of the collapse said they are concerned about the delays and detours. 

    "Difficulty getting in and out of the building, us worrying about how we're going to get to work," hair stylist India Ashe said. "Half of the businesses in the area are closed, but we're just trying to figure out what to do."

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