Tuesday, October 9, 2018
Controversial McDonald's closes
From the Queens Chronicle:
A company representative forwarded the Chronicle a statement from owner/operator Jack Bert, who thanked the community for its patronage over the years, as well as his employees, “all of whom have been offered the opportunity to work in our other restaurants,” a number believed to be between 20 and 25. Most if not all have accepted the jobs, a McDonald’s spokeswoman said.
The company would not give a reason for the abrupt shutdown, though Assemblyman Ron Kim (D-Flushing) and John Choe, the executive director of the Flushing Chamber of Commerce, offered their takes.
Kim said in the big picture that new restaurants and eateries — many of them well-financed by conglomerates — are springing up in Flushing all the time with access to marketing money, technology and social media expertise.
He said Flushing’s economic success has driven up property values, with commercial rent on Main Street “now higher than what is found in Midtown Manhattan.”
But he also said this particular McDonald’s had a strained relationship with the neighborhood’s Korean community going back more than five years when the owner attempted to keep elderly Korean residents from taking up tables for hours at a time to socialize while he was trying to keep customers flowing.