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Still-Shuttered Seaport Restaurants May Reopen in August

Hurricane Sandy hit almost seven months ago, and the restaurants and other businesses of the South Street Seaport are largely still closed. According to an eye-opening update from Serious Eats on the status of the neighborhood, all 100-plus residential and commercial units owned by the Durst Corporation remain closed because of what the owner of the still-shuttered pizzeria Il Brigante calls a "geothermal nightmare." Basically, Durst had installed a below-ground geothermal heating system for the neighborhood, which was obviously flooded by Sandy's waters.

Il Brigante's owner, who spoke to Serious Eats anonymously, says that this could push back reopening to August:

The stage we're at now is that the landlord has looked through the designs, has just made a few modifications and now my engineer is making the corrections. The plans are going to be sent back to my landlord and finally I can send it to the Department of Buildings and Landmarks for approval, which should take about four weeks. Then we're talking about seven weeks of rebuilding time.
The process of simply deciding what to do about it took a full two months and required most of the businesses there?including restaurants?to put any rebuilding plans on hold. All told, Il Brigante's rebuilding process will cost $150,000, though as reported earlier the restaurant raised $2K on LuckyAnt and is doing some delivery from an off-site kitchen.
· Seven Months After Sandy, South Street Seaport Restaurants Still Struggling [Serious Eats]
· All Coverage of Hurricane Sandy [~ENY~]

Il Brigante

214 Front St., New York, NY