ST. CHARLES – Work on a parking lot serving several businesses along Randall Road in St. Charles has been interrupted because of a union protest.
Laborers’ Local 582 has spent about a month protesting the construction on the parking lot that serves such businesses as La Huerta Supermarket, Colonial Cafe and Mr. Samurai Steak and Sushi just north of the intersection with Prairie Street.
Tuesday, two inflatable rats were set up along Randall Road, and union representatives held a sign alleging the project’s general contractor, VFS Concrete, pays substandard wages and benefits. The picketers declined to comment, indicating their sign outlined their position.
Vito Scavelli of VFS Concrete Inc., a nonunion company, said the union is trying to make a nuisance out of the job site.
“We’re trying to improve the shopping center,” he said.
Describing the union’s tactics as “strong-arm,” Scavelli said the union has put pressure on his asphalt supplier, which stopped delivering supplies this week.
Scavelli said he has yet to make arrangements with another supplier.
“I’m playing the waiting game,” he said.
A phone call seeking comment from Laborers’ Local 582 was not returned by late Tuesday afternoon.
Although parts of it remain under construction, the parking lot is open to motorists.
Phil Brasse – asset manager for the property owner, Angel Associates – said work was hoped to be finished by Sept. 1 on the more than 200-space parking lot. The construction is about two-thirds complete, he said.
“We’d just like to get it done,” Brasse said.