St. Paul plans relief fund for Central Corridor businesses

Small businesses that can prove hardship during construction of a proposed light-rail transit line along University Avenue in St. Paul may get some relief.

Mayor Chris Coleman Tuesday will announce early efforts to set up a compensation fund.

The mayor's office says it wants to create a financial safety net for small businesses hit hard by the four-year construction period, but the city still has no idea where the money will come from, or which businesses would qualify.

Nancy Homans is the mayor's policy director. She says the concept grew out of a strong community consensus to protect the merchants in the Central Corridor.

"From the business community, from the chamber of commerce, from the council -- all of us generally agree that these businesses should not go out of business because of the construction season," Homans said.

Business owners would also receive financial training and marketing advice on how they can prepare for construction.

Your support matters.

You make MPR News possible. Individual donations are behind the clarity in coverage from our reporters across the state, stories that connect us, and conversations that provide perspectives. Help ensure MPR remains a resource that brings Minnesotans together.