Milk Street Cafe Closes After Losing Business During Occupy Wall Street Protests
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Six months after opening a popular eatery on Wall Street, the owner is closing its doors for good on Thursday.
Marc Epstein said that when he opened the Milk Street Café, business was booming but then came Occupy Wall Street and precautions by the police department.
“Barricades showed up here on Sept. 17 and it’s now week number 12,” Epstein said.
1010 WINS’ Gary Baumgarten with Marc Epstein
Epstein said he asked police to remove barricades after OWS was evicted from Zuccotti Park but they wouldn’t.
Last month, Epstein was forced to let 21 employees go and cut the store’s hours, closing at 3 p.m. instead of 9 p.m.
In June, he opened the New York branch of the Boston shop, which has a 30 year history. Epstein says he leased the space on Wall Street because it was next to a pedestrian plaza – and his was the only restaurant along that plaza.
However, Epstein said OWS destroyed pedestrian traffic turning Wall Street into “a desolate, police-controlled area.”
Loyal customers are saddened by Epstein’s decision to call it quits.
”Occupy Wall Street is fighting because people are unemployed and people don’t have jobs,” one woman said. “This place had to cut their workforce and now they’re closing down. So, what has it accomplished?” one woman said.
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