COVID’s suffocating grasp is choking businesses in Cambridge’s Central Square

“I’m wondering whether or not I can survive,” he said last week. “Right now I’m just hoping and praying.”

Adelson has a lot of company in his worries. Central Square, home to an eclectic array of shops, and before the pandemic, a bustling restaurant and nightlife scene, is in many ways emblematic of the devastation the coronavirus has wrought on small businesses across the region and country — and of the way the virus’s suffocating grasp has spread into the most vibrant neighborhoods.

“We’re all worried,” said Cambridge Mayor Sumbul Siddiqui recently of what kind of Central Square will emerge from the pandemic.

Date spot Cuchi Cuchi called it quits in May after 19 years. The Field, a popular, no-frills Irish pub on Prospect Street, made it 25 years before closing in July.

Customers browse at Rodney's Book Store, which has been in the square for 20 years and will close on Oct. 31.
Customers browse at Rodney’s Book Store, which has been in the square for 20 years and will
Read More