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Cleanup continues after flooding at Washington Harbour

Saturday - 4/23/2011, 6:35pm  ET

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It's still unclear when the restaurants and businesses damanged by the flood will reopen. (Kathy Stewart/WTOP Photo)

Kathy Stewart, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - The big cleanup at the Washington Harbour continues, but Easter weekend is definitely a washout for many of the businesses damaged by the flooding of the Potomac River.

Three popular restaurants and the garage were inundated with upwards of 10 to 12 feet of water.

Catherine, who works at the Harbour's Roche Salon, says Tony and Joe's, Farmers and Fishers and Sequoia were completely wiped out by the river.

"They're going to have to do complete renovations," she says.

Dan Simons, owner of Farmers and Fishers, says the damage is so substantial that he can't even fathom when the restaurant will reopen.

One of the workers says there was so much water that fish were actually swimming at the bottom of an elevator shaft.

Although there was no water damage, Catherine says the salon has been closed all week because they have no power. Power is being restored to some businesses, but it is a slow process. They're hoping the salon will be open by Tuesday of next week.

Monica, who works at Caldwell Bankers at the Harbour, says she came to work on Monday and was turned away by police. She says a police escort helped her grab her computer and files on Wednesday.

Monday's flooding occurred after steel flood gates at the plaza weren't completely raised - something that surprised Arthur Cotton Moore, the architect of the gates, who says if property managers had completely raised the gates they would have worked as they have some 75 other times over the past 25 years.

MRP Real Estate Services, the company that owns and manages Washington Harbour, is staying silent on why more action wasn't taken to prevent the deluge. But a class-action lawsuit has been filed against the managers.

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(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)