Snowstorms hit local businesses hard

The record snow that has hit the city has negatively affected businesses on Mission Hill, according to members of Mission Hill Main Street (MHMS). MHMS is a business promotion organization.

Michel Soltani, vice president of the MHMS board and owner of the Mission Bar and Grill, said in an email to the Gazette he is “very concerned” with how this winter is affecting local business. He said he took a personal survey in the Mission Hill district and found businesses were off 70 to 75 percent.

“We need to get prepared for this to never happen again for the strongest economy and country in the world. We did real bad,” Soltani said.

He criticized the problem-plagued MBTA and the snow removal, saying that Tremont Street is still not fully cleared. Soltani said he had workers who could not get to work or park their cars.

“We’re all suffering because of the [slow] response to the removal of snow,” he said.

Soltani said the solution is for elected officials and small business owners to come together and figure out a better plan and to make sure Gov. Charlie Baker follows through on his promise to provide loans to small businesses.

Richard Rouse, executive director of MHMS, echoed Soltani sentiments.

“Overall, everyone has taken a bath,” said Rouse.

He said that the snowstorms have created a “general malaise,” but people will soon be out and about, looking to break the cabin fever in the next couple of weeks. Rouse also said that businesses are looking forward to St. Patrick’s Day to rebound from losses.

The City has created “Boston Bingo,” a game created to help Main Street businesses recover from losses suffered because of the snow. The game features bingo cards encouraging people to go to a particular type of business, snap a photo and post it on social media. For more information, visit

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