End nears for Palermo & some other Tribeca eateries

Palermo Pizza was told it must close by the end of July. Downtown Express photo by Mia Rupani.

Palermo Pizza was told it must close by the end of July. Downtown Express photo by Mia Rupani.

By MIA RUPANI | (Originally posted Jue 30, 2015) Will next month be the end for a block of Tribeca eateries that have been facing the ax since May?

Despite this news, the seven bars and restaurants on West Broadway are still bustling with activity with no sign the end may be near.

The employees at Palermo Pizza told regular Rosario Castronovo that they were instructed to leave by the end of July, he told Downtown Express.

“It appears that July 31 is their last day, but could be sooner if they choose…how much more can our neighborhood take? Tribeca is dying a very slow and agonizing death, and the new Tribeca has lost infrastructure,” he said.

A woman identifying herself as Palermo’s owner said in a phone interview that “We do not know where Palermo will be moving to…we got the letter in the mail that we have to be out by July 31, but we aren’t going to comply with that.”

Cape Advisors reportedly purchased the six building stretch on West Broadway between Warren and Murray Sts. for $50 million in May. The buildings will eventually be torn down to make way for the 46,000-square-foot condominiums.

The W. Broadway bock of businesses likely to be evicted. Downtown Express photo by Mia Rupani.

The W. Broadway block of businesses likely to be evicted. Downtown Express photo by Mia Rupani.

Castronovo said he was frustrated by the loss of neighborhood businesses in Tribeca, where he lives with his family.

“Palermo is one of those special places in Tribeca that seems to be disappearing,” he said. “Once you take away family staples, you erode what is important to sustaining a community. Food, shelter…there are very few to no affordable housing Downtown…and education are all under attack by development.”

The Cricketer’s Arms, located at 57 Murray St., is another restaurant that will face eviction.

A manager at Cricketer’s speaking on the condition of anonymity, said he thought they had some more time.

“Our lease is not up until February, so we still have a lot of time to figure things out,” he said. He mentioned that Cape Advisors might try to buy them out of the lease, but they have not been approached yet.

He said Cricketer’s will be moving to a new location, but as of now, that location has not been decided. “It will take a lot of time and planning and rent will obviously go up wherever we move to,” he added.

Other restaurants or other businesses likely to be evicted include The Raccoon Lodge, Mariachi’s, Banh Mi, Saleya, and New York Dolls.

Many of the owners and employees were hesitant to speak openly about the situation, and much like Cricketer’s, they have yet to decide where their businesses will move.

Cape Advisors did not respond to a request for comment.

For now, the restaurants are continuing to cater to large lunch and dinner crowds despite the impending threat of the condos that will eventually drive them out.

“We are constantly inviting real estate investment without auditing and adjusting our foundations within the context of the community,” Castronovo said. “It’s irresponsible city planning and we need to be open to dialogue about what is philosophically important for the survival and responsible growth of the polis.”

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