Williston, ND (KEYZ) With little fanfare this afternoon, Williston Public Works crews removed the last barricades on Main Street in front of the Hedderich’s building. “Today was a pretty big milestone for us,” says City Administrator David Tuan. “We got Main Street and Second back open, so the detour is no longer in place. Traffic can flow freely down there and Summer Nights on Main is back south at Broadway and Main Street,” he says.
Tuan says the last month and a half has been tough on area merchants, even those not directly effected by the Hedderich’s fire, and is pleased the sidewalks are also fully reopened and restrictions on pedestrian traffic is also lifted.
“Things are back to normal, but I think a lot of people had avoided the area and now we are trying to get everybody back down, and I think that Thursday is a really great time for everybody to be closer to that intersection now with Summer Nights on Main Street, and get back into being comfortable walking down town, parking and visiting their favorite shops,” he said.
Although the green light has been given to both businesses on either side of the Hedderich’s Building to reopen, Lucy Lu’s restaurant and Joan of Art, may not reopen for several more weeks due to clean up from minor water and smoke damage. “It’s completely up to the owner’s of the businesses about when and how they want to reopen. We have only told them it safe to go back in and open up,” says Tuan. The verdict is still out on the future of Hedderich’s single remaining floor. “The decision whether to demolish the structure or rebuild will be completely up to the owner and his insurance company,” says Tuan, pointing out if a second floor is to replace the old, it will need to be built to modern current day building codes.