Bishop Street Restaurants in Danger After First Letdown by the Courts
MONTREAL, October 2, 2017 – In a decision rendered on September 28, 2017, the Superior Court of Quebec in Montreal dismissed the request for temporary compensation as a last resort to help five restaurateurs on Bishop Street who risk having to close down due to the major construction that has disrupted Bishop Street since October 2016.
The request was filed in April of this year by Kafein, Ferrari, Craft Grilled Cheese, Gourmet Burger and Mesa 14, 5 businesses that have seen a major decline in their clientele since the City of Montreal and the STM began work on the street to build a new mechanical ventilation station at Guy Concordia metro station. The construction has radically transformed this normally busy commercial artery into a real ordeal for any potential customers of the businesses residing on this street, and is only expected to be completed in 2020, a period totaling about 42 months.
The financial compensation sought by the merchants would have allowed them to remain open until the trial, where the liability of the City of Montreal and the Société de Transport de Montréal will be more fully debated. “This decision might mean a total loss for these 5 restaurants as they fear that they won’t be able to survive until the trial, which probably won’t take place for at least a year and a half”, explains Jamie Benizri, the lawyer heading the case.
The merchants say they are extremely disappointed by the decision. “It’s a total injustice, especially seeing that the City of Montreal is offering financial support to merchants in similar situations on St Hubert, St Denis and Notre Dame,” says Elio Shiavi, owner of Restaurant Ferrari. “It’s unbelievable that our justice system has failed to recognize the precarious situation in which we find ourselves and the obvious responsibility of the City of Montreal and the STM.”
Dedicated to the future of the street, the Bishop Street restaurateurs are seeking the support of the public and would like to remind restaurant-goers that they are open for business! “While the street is a mess outside, inside, each of these us has something unique to offer and we remain committed to providing delicious meals and a wonderful dining experience to all our guests”, explains Elio.
Find all the details of the motion tabled in our original press release here.