The Stage Restaurant, which has been shuttered since shady gas piping was discovered in the basement last spring, will not be reopening. The restaurant's owner, Roman Diakun, announced on Facebook that the 35-year-old restaurant could not overcome losses in profit and the struggle of fighting an eviction and decided to shutter the restaurant entirely. Another heartbreaking entry in Jeremiah Moss's mission to #SaveNYC.
"Over the past year, we have resolved our dispute with the landlord and Icon Realty Management," Diakun explained. "Stage Restaurant never engaged in any wrongdoing; however, after our prolonged closure and because of the cost to make the repairs and expenses of reopening, we are sad to say that the Stage cannot reopen."
Stage's problems began after the catastrophic East Village explosion that killed two, wiped out three other restaurants and prompted an increase in inspections and heightened awareness of potential gas line issues. A Con Edison inspection revealed the gas siphoning, prompting a gas shut off and a stop work order by the DOB. The building's landlord, Icon Realty, claimed restaurant owner Roman Diakun had been siphoning gas from pipes meant to feed the residential units, an allegation Diakun continues to deny.
A petition started by Diakun's son and funds raised to fight the eviction were apparently not enough to recoup losses from the many months the restaurant was unable to reopen. "The landlord has doubled the rent and wants the Stage out of there one way or another," according to Robert Brenner.
"Thank you all for your support, your signatures, your donations, and especially your kind words. We could not have realized our passion and love for nourishing and providing a place of comfort and gathering to the community without you all," Diakun continued. "Your loyalty, support, kindness and love have been a true blessing, and something we will never forget. "