Sunapee One-way Traffic Hurts Harbor Restaurant Business

Anchrage2009The one-way loop at Sunapee Harbor has Anchorage owners Karlie and Glenn Shaw gathering signatures on a petition to end the town’s trial traffic plan for the area. The one-way loop is negatively affecting business, Glenn Shaw said today in a phone interview. In particular, it’s hurting the restaurant’s nighttime dinner and after-hour business.

Fewer people are coming and staying, Shaw said. The one-way traffic route is one reason for the decline, Shaw explained. The new traffic pattern forces vehicles past the Anchorage in a one-way direction, and rather than alleviating parking issues, the one-way loop is “causing parking problems.”


Jersey barriers now direct one-way traffic at Sunapee Harbor. The trial one-way traffic loop began June 17.

People are confused and they will not circulate back to park. They may park in the town lot by the public dock and walk over to the restaurant, but they will not come around the loop to find a space. Instead, vehicles exit the harbor and do not return, according to Shaw, who has been observing the new traffic design since it was implemented two weeks ago. Also, the Jersey barriers put in place around the harbor “look bad,” he added.

The entire situation makes people feel less inclined to linger and stay.

“It’s very hard to come to enjoy the Lake,” Shaw added, whose restaurant business relies on both local and out-of-town visitors.

This is Shaw’s fourth year operating the Anchorage. While still hopeful things will improve, Shaw would like to see an end to the one-way loop. It’s “seriously wrong.” If really necessary, it at least needs to go counter-clockwise.

“It’s wonderful to be busy” and have people come visit and enjoy the harbor and the lake, Shaw added. However, the one-way loop along with other factors–the town’s limitation on trailer parking that impacts boat launches, the rainy weather and the economy–are “making it hard to run my business.”

Shaw intends to attend tonight’s meeting of the Sunapee board of selectmen. The one-way loop is on both Shaw’s and the selectmen’s agenda.

See related article and poll: One-way Loop is Hot Topic in Sunapee (

Comments about the one-way loop from other Sunapee Harbor business owners are welcome. Send them to

3 Responses

  1. I am pleased to see the return to normal traffic flow in the harbor area. I can not help but observe that the harbor is not now nor can I see it ever returning to the dynamic hustling, bustling center it was in the 1949 period when several major hotels, lodges, cottages brought life to the area for the summer folks. The eating places were noted for their good food and each place tried to outdo the others in activities. Plus, of course, there were gift shops, a roller skating, movie place, bowling alley and slot machines. It would surely appear that a whole new more stately image is the order of the day in the area, for better or for worse.

  2. I agree with Bob Mcnamara. The Harbor is not the Harbor of the the past several years. I cannot see how the Riverway Association has improved the Harbor. It is sad. There are only two restaurants in the Harbor, besides the ship, and one seems to only be opened on a whim. There needs to be some incentive for nice shops and restaurants to open in the harbor. I have been told of the terms set by the association which have discouraged possible prospects. The barriers look rediculous and the set up is confusing. Noted many drivers going in the wrong direction.

    Bring back the Harbor of Olde!!

  3. the barriers look like crap. nice way to ruin the aesthetics.

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