Like many other beloved small-town institutions across Vermont, the Plainfield Co-Op has been coping with dwindling sales due to the one-two punch of pandemic-related restrictions and the subsequent labor shortage.

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On top of that, nearby competitors such as the Hunger Mountain Co-op in Montpelier had carved into its business over the past few years.

Now the co-op faces a fresh existential threat: the looming partial shutdown of the Main Street bridge connecting Plainfield — and therefore the co-op — to Route 2. Repair work on the bridge deck, which has been corroded by salt and water, is tentatively scheduled to start mid-July after being put off for years, and traffic will be reduced to a single lane.

Read more in Seven Days.