Quad City businesses impacted by flood-related road closures

Published: Apr. 24, 2023 at 11:56 PM CDT
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DAVENPORT, Iowa & MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) - As the Mississippi River continues to rise, several Quad City Area businesses are now dealing with road closures, making it inconvenient for some of their regulars to shop.

On Monday, River Drive in Davenport was blocked off at Fremont Street making it hard to navigate downtown. Across the river and upstream in Moline, River Drive was closed at 23rd Street.

Catfish Charlie’s in Moline was set to hold a soft opening on Wednesday. With the water rising, Charles Cretsinger said they’re now left to adapt.

“There’s not much you can do. I mean, you can’t fight Mother Nature,” Cretsinger said. “Think we’re gonna hold off for a bit and just see what happens with the [River Drive] being closed down to the west of us. It looks like we might lose the road to the east of us.”

Meanwhile, in Davenport, Blue Spruce General Store stands about a block away from River Drive on Second Street. The micro-grocery store and deli opened up shop last October.

Owner Brandon Carleton lost his car in the 2019 flood. This year, he said they’ve already noticed a decline in foot traffic from the road closures.

“The water did not get into this building. So it was something that crossed my mind. But you know, we took a look at where the aerial photos in 2019. And the water kind of came up, just right up to where our building starts,”

Catfish Charlie’s General Manager Matthew Leaf said road closures have delayed deliveries and training new employees, making it difficult to get the new restaurant going.

“With this going on, I suppose a little bit behind,” Leaf said. “We’re trudging through, we’ll move forward and we’ll get her open.”

While driving around the QC may be annoying for the next few weeks, Carleton said it’s still important to shop local.

“[The river] can be something that’s really beautiful, but it can also be something that’s very damaging,” Carleton said. “It’s kind of a weird place to live ... or to exist, in loving a river but also being a little afraid of it.”

According to the National Weather Service, the Mississippi is projected to rise to 21.7 feet by May 1 at Rock Island. The river reached a record 22.7 feet back in 2019.