Raleigh restaurant owner expresses anger with sign

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Benjamin Shelton opened Gringo A Go Go on the corner of Edenton and Person streets two years ago.

"I am the entire company. I work 100 hours a week. I'm proud of what I do," he said.

Such a high traffic area should be a great spot for a hip farm-to-table Mexican restaurant, but a sign now out front reading "HEY RALEIGH! Stop closing my intersection constantly. YOU'RE KILLING MY BUSINESS" says otherwise.

Shelton says for running races, walks for charity, and other private events, the city closes Person Street to traffic.

"I don't mind sometimes, but it's a lot," he said. "Eleven weekends a year, that's 20 percent of the year."

And Shelton says he's not being dramatic. The closures don't just hurt business, they kill it.

"I get zero business, zero," he explained.

He says sometimes the city even closes Person for events blocks away, so he went to City Hall looking for solutions.

"You just have to deal with it, that's what the city attorney told me," he said.

Last year, the city created an event management office to handle logistics and neighborhood notification and Shelton said he was told Raleigh isn't accepting more events, but they're not changing what's already on the books.

But he says it's leaving a bad taste in customers' mouths.

"They don't remember that someone else closed the intersection down, all they remember is they have a hard time getting here, let's go somewhere else," he said.

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