Coronavirus woes shut many years of Brooklyn diner
BROOKLYN, NY – An iconic diner on Dekalb Avenue could be the latest restaurant victim of the coronavirus crisis.
Diner Mega Bites – which has been near Vanderbilt Avenue for decades – announced on Christmas Eve it would be closing indefinitely after hoping for the recently passed federal aid package or a rental break.
“We hoped that this next COVID-19 relief bill would have provided meaningful support for restaurants and other small businesses without credit, but unfortunately not. We also hoped our landlord would have accepted a significant rent reduction, but he didn’t. “Wrote the restaurant on its Facebook page.
“In view of the significant decline in business due to the pandemic, we have been losing money since March and can no longer financially support this business under the false promise that ‘help’ is ‘just around the corner’.”
The $ 900 billion aid package includes a restart of the paycheck protection program, or the loan program designed to help small businesses, but Mega Bites is not alone in criticizing that the loans will not be enough to save the restaurant industry.
The diner is also one of a large number of New York restaurants struggling with rent. According to a study, a whopping 88 percent of the city’s restaurants failed to pay their full rent in October.
Like many restaurants, the Black-owned Diner had launched a GoFundMe over the summer.
“Owning while black is one thing,” wrote the owners at the time. “All the funds raised will be used to offset not only the apparent decline in business, but also the not-so-obvious additional costs that arise because racism is really systemic and expensive to defend against black companies.”
The fundraiser, which is still active, raised approximately $ 4,000 from its $ 100,000 goal.