Downtown Katy businesses reopen as Harvey recovery continues

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Businesses are reopening in old Katy after flooding from Tropical Storm Harvey brought as many as 28 inches of floodwaters through their doors. Some establishments are still closed, while others opened less than a week after floodwaters receded.

Business owners expressed frustration at the lack of customers in their stores, which are generally located near Avenues A and D, First and Third streets, and along Hwy. 90. About half of the businesses reported having insurance that covered flooding, but some are still waiting on insurance money to come in.

Ruizstudios Home Decor

Most of the businesses that spoke with Community Impact Newspaper  depended on their landlords for repairs after the flood, including Ruizstudios Home Decor. Owner Beverly Ruiz said that the store had more than 4 inches of water and reopened Oct. 11 after repairs were completed.

“Some of my regular customers are starting to come back and they are the ones that spend the most money in the store,” Ruiz said.

The Salon on 2nd

Businesses also had community help during the basic storm cleanup. Rene O’Shields, co-owner of The Salon on 2nd, said she had assistance from a boy scout troop, a pair of football players and fellow salon owner Lois Duncan of Kim’s Creations and Hair by Lois.

Duncan gave O’Shields space and supplies for her clients while repairs were underway, and O’Shields added that the city of Katy’s inspectors played a part in getting her businesses reopened.

“The city was super-good at making sure the landlord met all of the safety requirements,” O’Shields said.

Antique shops open

Mechelle Hernandez, an employee at The Limited Edition Art & Antiques, said that the shop had also received help from neighbors after it took more than 2 feet of water. She recalled structural and inventory damages at the shop, located at 5717 Second St., Katy. 

“Bill Baine [of KT Antiques]came over and offered services and got things done quickly,” Hernandez said.

Baine, who also owns a construction company, had help from relatives to repair his store at 5614 Second St., Katy.

“He came in and rolled up his shirtsleeves and went to work,” said Katy Achim, one of the consigners that helps him with the store.

Katy Printers and Office Supplies

Katy Printers and Office Supplies was closed for about three weeks after the flood, according to owner Mark Dittert. The business, which is located at 5807 Hwy. 90, Katy, lost digital and analog printing equipment while some pieces could be repaired.

Dittert said that Katy Printers is expecting 80 percent of their insurance claim to be paid out eventually.

“[Insurance] gave us about 20 percent of what’s coming,” Dittert said. “It was enough to get going again.”

Katerra Exotics

Val Adams, whose family owns the Katerra Exotics meat market at 5627 Third St., Katy, said that the storm was “just the icing on the cake” after business had slowed down because of the downtown Katy plaza road that began in January.

Many business owners expressed a similar sentiment but were optimistic after the Katy Rice Harvest Festival helped them get their sales restarted.

“We are open for business. You can find us.” Adams said.

Reopenings expected

Three businesses told Community Impact Newspaper they plan to reopen later this month:

  • Oct. 21: NY Texas Style, 5612 Second St., Katy.
  • Oct. 30: Snappy’s Cafe & Grill, 5803 Hwy. 90, Katy.
  • Oct. 31: Kay’s Tea Parlour, 5617 Second St., Katy.

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R. Hans Miller

R. Hans Miller joined the Community Impact team in June 2017. He is a recent graduate of Texas State University's College of Journalism and Mass Communication, a U.S. Army veteran, husband and father. He is originally from Montana. He has written for VoiceBox Media and the San Marcos Daily Record, among others. He covers city government, emergency services, local business development and other topics for the Katy area.

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