More than a dozen businesses in Pointe Claire are worried about the length of time required to finish construction on Cartier Ave. after problems with the contractor hired to do the job.

Farokh Kohan is one of several store managers who said the number of customers entering the store dropped when roadwork began six months ago.

"Some, they change their mind. They just simply go back because it's not easy to get to this store," said the manager of the Maison de l'aspirateur.

Work had been continuing apace but stopped suddenly last week. The contractor has since filed for bankruptcy.

The owner of Action Scuba said business was already slow in the summer, which is traditionally a busy season.

"Even today we're dealing with Fed Ex and stuff who aren't delivering our products," said Gary Davis.

Now he is worried that Christmas shopper will skip the neighbourhood entirely.

Ute St-Jean, the owner of a Pilates studio on the strip, is also concerned.

"It's affecting new business because new business cannot find us," she said.

The new mayor of Pointe Claire, John Belvedere, said he's on the case.

"There's a little bit of red tape but it's being fast tracked believe it or not. Everybody's working to get this done," said Belvedere.

The original contractor put up a bond when he was awarded the contract, so the work will eventually be finished.

"The contract's insured so right now we're dealing with the bond company and actually we're in a process of almost signing an agreement with them where they'll be able to activate another contract and get the work started shortly," said Belvedere.

Whether the construction will be completed before snow falls, and the numerous trenches on the street get filled with snow, is another matter.

Mayor Belvedere visited all merchants in the area this week, and he told them that construction would be completed by Dec. 15

The city of Pointe Claire will update merchants and residents at a meeting at the Beaconsfield Golf Course on Monday Dec. 4 at 7 p.m.