With more than 1500 signatures on a 'Save the Rumpus Room' petition to Mayor Robertson, emotions are running high over news that the popular Main Street restaurant is to close. The first news of this came on Monday night from co-owner Rachel Zottenberg via her Facebook page saying that they were being "kicked out" after "a battle" with the landlord, citing condos as the reason. An interview with the Metro mentions crying staff and "non-ending" fights with the landlord. However, like many leases in Vancouver, Zottenberg and partner David Duprey's lease (a five year with the option of a further five) had a demolition clause so although unwelcome, it can't have been a surprise.
Zotterberg spoke with Eater via email this morning:
"Yes we did sign a lease and we aren't arguing that, we simply have been fighting for open communication and to stay as long as we possibly could. We would stay till the last day this building is standing, and it's still unclear when that's going to be. The information you have about what's happening to the space (according to Global news it is rentals not condos being built-EVAN) is news to us as well. The landlord originally said condos, now he's saying other things. I think in truth we won't know what he's going to do until he does it.
For my part. I would say. I just love it here. I love the neighborhood and all the other restaurants and regulars. I am sad and angry about leaving. That's how I feel. Just being honest :) The petition was started by someone who loves the Rumpus Room. And that's wonderful. We appreciate any support. Of course we would love stay and if our landlord reads that and it changes his feelings. Then all the better."
Duprey posted a comment on Scout last night saying,
This is a larger conversation about the future of our city. we signed a deal and i can live with it. no one is crying foul. this is a larger conversation about the future of our city. every lease i come across now has a demo Claus. yes the fox has one and the narrow and the new artist space we just crated at 108 east hastings. landlords put them in because vancouver prices have been and continue to go up and up. its crazy and every one knows it.· Rumpus Room Petition [Change.Org]
· Rumpus Room [Official Site]
· All Previous Rumpus Room Coverage [EVAN]
· Rumpus Room Eviction Symbolic of Main Street Changes [Global]