Troy business owners hope for the best, prepare for the worst ahead of Wednesday protest

Rensselaer County

TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Just as businesses in Troy planned to reopen, their windows and doors are sealed tight by boards and plywood. Recent unrest around the Capital Region has owners uneasy.

“It definitely takes away from our curb appeal. We had planned on doing a big marketing release starting this week and to push for our reopening. It’s definitely going to give us a setback,” explains David Langer, co-owner of Troy Cloth and Paper retail boutique.

“This company has been here 111 years doing business and it breaks my heart to have to board up windows,” says Blanchard Industrial Supplies Owner Larry Murray.

Troy locals are preparing for what they hope will be a peaceful protest Wednesday evening against the death of George Floyd, but what they fear may become rioting and looting. 

“We are adding additional cameras to ensure that, not just our building is safe, but the people that are walking by and the cars are all safe for our staff,” Langer explains to NEWS10’s Mikhaela Singleton.

He says he hopes both protesters and police follow the peaceful example set by Schenectady.

“The police were sitting there, they were walking with the people, they were supporting them and basically listening. I hope Troy is going to follow suit. I know they have already increased their presence down here, and we are hoping that they’re going to maintain order and actually listen to what the people have to say,” he says.

Langer adds small businesses are already struggling. He hopes whatever happens Wednesday night won’t set New York’s reopening back even farther.

“I know several businesses that have already closed their doors, many of them have already made cutbacks. Our staff, we actually lost half of them because they were students at RPI. You know, when you loot or you vandalize a small business, it really set us all back as a community,” he says.

Meanwhile, many of the barricades feature signs to show the businesses still support the movement, but pray it stays safe.

“Keep your voice. Get your message across. I understand, but I’ll respect them but they need to respect us as well,” Murray says.

An update posted to Facebook by Troy City Hall suggests that the protest will not happen:

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