LRT floods business again

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May 5, 2003 // UPDATED 10:50 am - April 30, 2007
By: ie Lebewitz hopes that when the Hiawatha Light Rail line starts running in April 2004, thousands of riders will step out of the train and through her doors daily. The business will be compensation for the two floods that light-rail construction has caused
ie Lebewitz hopes that when the Hiawatha Light Rail line starts running in April 2004, thousands of riders will step out of the train and through her doors daily. The business will be compensation for the two floods that light-rail construction has caused

Lebewitz owns Rosenthal Furniture, 22 N. 5th St., which is in front of the future Warehouse District Light Rail station. Last year, after construction crews tore up the sidewalk in front of the store, they failed to recover it before a spring downpour. The Hiawatha Line paid $500,000 for damage to her building and its inventory.

And last month, the Minneapolis City Council approved a $67,275 claim for a second flood. According to a city attorney's memo, "[during] light-rail construction, the Public Works Department blocked a storm sewer catch basin with concrete near Rosenthal Furniture. ... Shortly after Public Works completed the project, a torrential rainfall occurred that resulted in localized flooding. Water invaded the basement of the store and caused damage."

Said Lebewitz, "All I can do is pray that LRT will bring me business. We didn't ask for this. It's been a long haul."