BIG NICK’S CLOSING UPDATE: Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal Offers Help, Nick Says No Thanks For Now

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Wrote earlier this month that Big Nick’s Burger Joint is facing closure after 50+ years on the Upper West Side.

The landlord at 2175 Broadway (between 76th & 77th) is looking to increase the rent on the 1,000 square foot space from $40,000/month to $60,000/month.

State Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal, who represents the Upper West Side, recently offered her support to owner Nick Imirziades. For now, however, Mr. Imirziades is not yet ready to accept it.

Nick recently posted his correspondence with Ms. Rosenthal on Big Nick’s Facebook page — you can also see them below.

Here’s the letter from Assembelymember Rosenthal to Nick, dated 1/23/13:

Dear Mr. Imirziades,

I am writing about the recent news that Big Nick’s may be forced from its home on West 77th Street after 50 years because of a hefty monthly rent increase of $20,000.

As a lifelong Upper West Sider, I know Big Nick’s as a West Side institution, and countless people in this neighborhood do as well. I have long been a patron; reading the voluminous menu and choosing and eating a delectable dish is a tradition many of us would sorely miss. The closing of Big Nick’s would truly signify the end of an era for the Upper West Side. No one wants to see yet another big-box chain store take the place of a historic establishment like yours.

I would be happy to provide you with any support I can in your lease negotiations with Lophijo Realty to reach a resolution and ensure that the Upper West side remains home to Big Nick’s for the next 50 years. Please contact me at 212.873.6338  or rosenthall@assembly.state.ny.us if I can be of any assistance.

Sincerely,

Linda B. Rosenthal

And here’s Nick’s response, dated 1/26/13:

Dear Assembly Member Rosenthal,

I was proud to receive your letter and most kind offer of help. It means so much to me that West Siders so appreciate Big Nick’s.

At this point, the future is uncertain, and I am not yet ready to involve others in my discussions with the landlord.

When I have more information or become ready to move to the next step, you will be the first one to  know.

Thank you so very much for your support and offer of help. You have many demands on your time. I am extremely moved that you reached out o me in this way. Please also convey my appreciaten to your Community Affairs Director Paul Sawyier.

Sincerely,

Nick Imirziades

Short of reinventing the laws of supply and demand, I’m not exactly sure what type of support Ms. Rosenthal can offer. As far as I know, the landlord is simply trying to maximize the value of their asset (which, based on comments I’ve received, some readers apparently think is unacceptable).

While the property is listed as available for possession starting 2/1, it appears for now that Nick’s (and neighboring News Inc. and Bra Smyth) will remain open beyond that date while lease negotiations continue.

In related news, if you missed the earlier post, Nick recently launched a promotion where kids under 12 eat free on Tuesdays (i.e. today).



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