Last month, New York’s East Village was rocked by a major explosion that killed two people, injured 19 others, and shuttered several storefronts, including the iconic Pommes Frites. And now authorities may be closer to solving the mystery of the explosion.
Stage Restaurant, a Ukrainian diner that has been a neighborhood mainstay for 35 years, just received an eviction notice after authorities reportedly discovered illegally siphoned gas lines in the basement of the restaurant, which is across the street from the explosion site, according to WNYC. Investigators believe that an illegally tapped gas line is the cause of the explosion.
Soon after the explosion, Con Edison shut off the gas supply to the restaurant’s building at 128 Second Avenue after a tenant noticed the smell of gas in her apartment. Stage Restaurant closed soon after, and the entire building has gone two and a half weeks without gas. In an effort to save the restaurant, a neighborhood petition made the rounds. But it looks like they’re out of luck for now. The eviction notice, which was posted yesterday, states that the restaurant has until the end of the month to move out for “illegally and dangerously altering the piping and gas lines in the building.”