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Pete's Corner Grill is located in Parkdale at 1582 Queen St West. This historic district is filled with many small businesses including beloved restaurants and shops, however, due to compounded reasons the neighbourhood is unfortunately seeing major restructuring.
There have been numerous restaurant closures during this COVID pandemic because of the financial fragility that businesses are experiencing. Some businesses have been forced to close due to taxes and condo developments in the area. On Queen West from Gladstone Avenue to Bathurst Street, nearly half of the businesses have permanently closed according to Djanka Gajdel, the area’s Business Improvement Association treasurer.
Pete's Corner Grill is among the hundreds of business across the city that have been forced to close their doors. After the landlord reportedly sold the building to a franchise, the family business was given till October 26th to move out. After almost 12 years of service in the neighbourhood it is with heavy heart that this family business is forced to shut its doors.
Other Parkdale restaurants like Momo House and Tibet Kitchen took to Instagram to share their sadness and disbelief on social media. The neighbourhood restaurants express their gratitude for the support Pete's Corner has given them through the years. Momo House and Tibet Kitchen vow to give Pete's Corner a fighting chance, stating "we will see what we can do to help you stay in Parkdale! We don’t need big franchises in Parkdale, just local businesses!"
It is clear that Parkdale is a tight knit neighbourhood that treasures the familial relationships it has among small businesses and the local community. Big franchises threaten the integrity of the neighbourhood and the livelihood of people who have worked so hard to grow their businesses and persevere despite the pandemic.
The family is hoping to reopen but as of now it is uncertain what the fate of Pete's Corner Grill will be in the future.