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Shermer-Willow Businesses See 50 Percent Drop Since Derailment

Union Pacific is handling loss of business claims for local shops, including nearby Mario's Pizza and Beef, whose owner is still concerned about sustaining his business.

Businesses near the Shermer and Willow intersection keep struggling while Shermer Rd. remains blocked by the temporary stone bridge Union Pacific built to move freight until a new viaduct is built.

There is still , crushing two Glenview residents driving underneath. 

"I've seen books that [nearby businesses] are 40 to 50 percent off the usual business they have this time of year," said Don Owen, Glenview's Deputy Village Manager. "If that lasts over time, you can't sustain a business."

Related:

Union Pacific has a claims department dedicated to helping people who've been somehow affected by the company, but it is unclear what sort of claims businesses have been filing after the July 4 derailment. 

"We're running between 35 and 60 percent down," said Danny Goodman, owner of . He declined to comment on the status of his claim with Union Pacific. 

Goodman said employees from businesses on the south side of the bridge once visited the restaurant on a daily basis, but it's no longer convenient to do so with the Shermer blocked.

There are signs at the south corner of Shermer and Willow to indicate that businesses are still open and that there is a road closure ahead, but Goodman thinks people can't see them. 

"People barely see the sign that the road is closed," he said. "There's probably four, five dozen cars that make U-turns."

Mark Davis, spokesman for Union Pacific, said the company continues to encourage businesses and people affected by the bridge collapse to file a claim. 

"Union Pacific is working with the businesses and anyone that has submitted claims right now and I know that's an ongoing process," Davis said. "Each one is a little bit different and unique, and I know our claims team works with each individual business on a case-by-case basis."

A Second Public Meeting

It seems the best solution to sustain the businesses would be to build a bridge that reopens traffic on Shermer, but Glenview officials say Union Pacific has yet to present a suitable design for the new structure. 

"We don't feel like we've had enough assurances, for our questions, from Union Pacific," said Todd Hileman, Village Manager of Glenview. "We need solid facts to engage the public, but this puts us in a difficult possition to assess what they're offering and turn it around for our community."

According to Hileman, the villages have asked UP to design a bridge wider than the previous, without a support structure in the middle and possibly room for sidewalks. 

A joint meeting between Northbrook and Glenview officials remains tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 7:30 p.m. at Glenview Village Hall. If held, the meeting is meant to review information about the rebuilding process, and, according to a Village of Glenview press release, these meetings would be streamed on both village's web sites. 

According to the Journal and Topics Newspaper, this meeting will be open to the public and include Union Pacific officials as well. 

Patch will confirm the status of next Tuesday's meeting once it is clear. 

"Like" Northbrook or Glenview Patch on Facebook to see community updates in your news feed. 

Rudolph S Caparros Jr December 13, 2012 at 06:04 PM
HazMat Experts and Firefighters petition Dow Chemical and Union Pacific for safe rail tank cars transporting gas chlorine. Secondary containment is a necessary improvement that must be implemented. See--PETITION C KIT for First Responders Comments.

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