‘We cannot go on’: Growing number of Ottawa restaurants shuttering due to COVID-19
OTTAWA -- Continental Bagel Company has been in business for 17 years, but at the end of October it will close its doors in Ottawa.
"No business at all. We tried to do our best, we tried for many months but we cannot go on," said owner Santiago Diaz.
From the ByWard Market fire, to the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent temporary removal of downtown parking, the last year has been a struggle.
Back in April - just one month after the virus was declared a global pandemic - Restaurants Canada had reported nearly one in 10 restaurants had already permanently closed.
The forecast ahead is grim. The Canadian Chamber of Commerce is warning that "60 per cent of restaurants [in Canada] could close permanently in the next three months."
The list of closures in Ottawa is growing: Highlander Pub, DiVino, Tucker’s Marketplace, the Fish Market Restaurant, StoneFace Dolly’s, Don Cherry’s Kanata and most recently Wellington Eatery.
"It has been a beautiful 10 years serving you all," Wellington Eatery wrote in a Facebook post.
"They had really good staff and it’s unfortunate to see a staple in our neighbourhood go away," said Veda Rajole, one-of-three owners of Les Moulins La Fayette.
The Hintonburg bakery operates down the street. Rajole says they are counting their blessings to be open, but with winter fast-approaching foot traffic is bound to decline.
"It’s going to be a challenge, but I really hope that people come out to support us," he said.