Posted with permission from NJ.com
Battello, in the Newport section of Jersey City, closed a month early on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017. (Caitlin Mota | The Jersey Journal)
Battello, in the Newport section of Jersey City, closed a month early on Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017. (Caitlin Mota | The Jersey Journal)

There are no weddings or corporate events to plan, but the owners at Battello are keeping busy notifying customers of the restaurant's sudden closure while also trying to find dozens of employees new jobs.

The popular Jersey City waterfront restaurant was shuttered yesterday because the landlord, the LeFrak organization, said the pier on which it sits was found to be structurally unsound, Newport Marine Holdings, a LeFrak subsidiary, said in a statement. Battello's was initially told the restaurant could stay open until Sept. 15. 

More than 100 events, including 59 weddings, had been booked for Battello, which opened in 2014. The restaurant was completely booked on weekends through November, according to its website. 

"Battello is working feverishly on finding other places where couples can be relocated," said Casey Cotton, a spokeswoman for the restaurant. "We have been in contact with every couple and if we only reached their voice mails we are following up."

Cotton said everyone who placed a deposit was offered a full refund. She also noted that while some couples are finding new places to hold their wedding reception, other are rescheduling with Battello.

 

The sudden closure also means that 80 employees are out of work.  

"As far as the employees go, Battello is trying to find as many employment opportunities for them as we can right now," Cotton said. "These employees are like family."

Battello officials say they were told the repairs to the pier would be completed by April 2018. 

Newport Marine Holdings said in a statement that "As a result of the latest monitoring data, all access to the pier must be restricted effective immediately."

The Jersey Journal contacted both the Jersey City Buildings Department and the state Department of Environmental Protection, and was told that neither has any records of the pier being unstable. The DEP is responsible for the New Jersey shoreline.