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Construction on road to Mount Rushmore hurts area businesses

RAPID CITY (AP) — South Dakota business owners say over three years of construction on the road that's considered the gateway to the Black Hills and Mount Rushmore National Memorial has taken its toll.

The Rapid City Journal reports that several businesses along the popular tourist corridor on Mount Rushmore Road have closed or moved to different locations over the years.

Business owner Bob Rick still serves the area but says sales at his gasoline and convenience store have declined by about 30 percent.

The state transportation department, city officials and contractors coordinated to keep traffic flowing during the construction.

The $24 million project is tentatively scheduled to wrap up next summer. Business owners say they're hopeful that the corridor's new street pavements, sidewalks, medians and sewer and water lines will be worth it.