LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Manisha Patel has worked at the Friendly Mart convenience store in Shepherdsville for four years. She says she has never seen the store as empty as it is right now.

“It never stays five minutes like that," she said. "Nobody came in the last two hours,” she said.

That's because construction has shut down KY 61 right outside her door, meaning no traffic and no customers.

“The road is closed, so nobody comes,” store manager Rameshbhai Patel said.

KY 61 is one of at least four new road projects that have closed all or parts of roadways in the area this week.

  • KY 61 between KY 44 and Adam Shepherd Parkway in Bullitt County
  • Eastern Parkway between Poplar Level Road and Royal Avenue in Louisville
  • US 60 between Sherburn Lane and Fairmdale Road in St. Matthews
  • KY 329 Between KY 22 and KY 146 in Oldham County

The timing of road closings is usually up to the contractor. The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says many do aim for spring break.

“There's typically reduced traffic on the roads, so it has less of an impact on the traveling public,” cabinet spokesperson Naitore Djigbenou said.

It's better for motorists, but still not so good for business on KY 61.

The shutdown has led at least one business to close this week, and the convenience store has cut employee hours to stay afloat.

“I lose my business, so I have to pay my rent, have to pay my employees, have to pay electricity bill,” Patel said.

KYTC says it tries to give everyone plenty of warning before a road closes.

“Mainly, we just really ask for their patience that the work we're doing is to preserve roads that keep their businesses accessible to the public,” Djigbenou said.    

Indeed, when the road widening is all done, Patel is counting on business to be better than ever.

“I hope so," he said. "I am not sure. But we hope.”

The road closings are for this week only.

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