Advertisement

2 restaurants along 17 Avenue close their doors as COVID-19 pandemic wears on

Click to play video '17 Avenue restaurants plagued with construction, pandemic woes to close up shop' 17 Avenue restaurants plagued with construction, pandemic woes to close up shop
Two more businesses in Calgary’s retail and entertainment district are closing due to continuous challenges along 17 Avenue, from long construction slowdowns to the COVID-19 pandemic. Tracy Nagai reports – Oct 29, 2020

Another Calgary restaurant announced it’s shutting down its 17 Avenue location due to ongoing obstacles along the popular strip.

The marketing director for 1410 World Bier Haus said the issues started last summer due to an ongoing construction project.

“The biggest thing that hurt us the most was construction on 17 (Avenue), that was really tough to get through,” Joanna Andreopoulos explained. “In the process, property taxes went up and a lot closed down around us so we were kind of left on our own up here.”

Click to play video 'Pulling plug on patio season: Calgary restaurants prepare for tougher times' Pulling plug on patio season: Calgary restaurants prepare for tougher times
Pulling plug on patio season: Calgary restaurants prepare for tougher times – Oct 14, 2020

Major road and utility construction began on the roadway in 2017. The final phase of the project started up again in May 2019, leading to significant local detours.

Story continues below advertisement

Andreopoulos said the pandemic was the final straw for restaurant and lounge.

Read more: Construction starts again on Calgary’s 17 Avenue

“We actually didn’t get to celebrate our 15th birthday because we shut down a couple weeks before our 15th birthday party,” she said.

[ Sign up for our Health IQ newsletter for the latest coronavirus updates ]

“There’s a lot of fear right now in the restaurant industry. If we see restaurants shut down again we’re going to be really hurt.”

Read more: Cooler weather brings more concern for some Calgary restaurant owners

This week Mill Street Brewery also announced it will be closing down at the beginning of November.

“This decision was based on two factors,” said Mill Street president Daryl Minor in a statement. “The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on everyone in the hospitality sector, compounded by a location that was particularly hard hit by the loss of the Stampede and other major events.”

Read more: Calgary’s Mill Street Brew Pub closed by AHS for health order violations, lack of distancing

Industry advocates agree Calgary’s retail and entertainment district has been hit particularly hard.

Story continues below advertisement

“Businesses along 17 Avenue have tried to stay resilient through all the property tax increases and now COVID,” Ernie Tsu, the president of the Alberta Hospitality Association said.

“It’s just too much for them to try and hold on anymore.”

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: QR codes helping Calgary restaurants go menuless' Coronavirus: QR codes helping Calgary restaurants go menuless
Coronavirus: QR codes helping Calgary restaurants go menuless – Aug 4, 2020

On Wednesday, Calgary Mayor Neheed Nenshi commended the restaurant industry on how it’s been following the health guidelines throughout the pandemic.

“Restaurants and bars by and large have been doing an excellent job of managing the risk and creating good protocols,” he said.

Read more: New restaurants opening despite COVID-19 pandemic

Andreopoulos said World Bier Haus‘ two other Calgary locations are still up and running and have been doing well despite the ongoing health restrictions.

Story continues below advertisement

“We make sure we’re keeping our customers safe because this is our livelihood.”

Click to play video 'How Calgary restaurants are coping with the restart of business' How Calgary restaurants are coping with the restart of business
How Calgary restaurants are coping with the restart of business – May 27, 2020