With a huge decrease in pedestrian traffic, several access points closed off, hordes of police with riot gear and the possibility of being flooded by protesters, Toronto’s Path already looks to be a microcosm of G20 Toronto. “Traffic has dropped by about half,” says Domenic Minici, manager of the Path’s Piazza Manna, during an unusually slow lunch rush. “It’s killing us because we should be getting a boost from the World Cup.”
Armand Hazan, manager of Fabio European Menswear near the Path, says customer presence is virtually none, though there are lots of police officers everywhere. “This is high season for us, so it’s a big problem,” he says.
“There are so many people in the financial district working at home, and of course parking is quite restricted,” says Don Ross, owner of ManorHill Fine Art. “So we expected traffic to be way down, and consequently, so are sales.”
Some businesses are shutting down pre-emptively as sections of the Path border on ghost-town status. Four Restaurant tells us it will be closed on Friday due to a decrease in business that has been slow all week. The Path will be completely shut down from Friday evening until Monday, with some sections closing earlier.