After 15 years, the owners of a popular nightclub announced they are shutting their doors due to revenue losses stemming from Hurricane Harvey and the city’s post-storm curfew.
The staff at Drink Houston released a statement saying the storm and the curfew “devastated our business” and they “have not been able to catch up from our losses” since the storm.
Even after the waters receded in many parts of the city, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced a 10:00 p.m. curfew as a means to curtail looting and other crimes.
He later revised the curfew to midnight, then lifted it on Sept. 5, with the exception of sections of West Houston that were still underwater.
Numerous other bars and nightclubs saw their revenues suffer during and after the hurricane.
While most bars announce their last call shortly before 2:00 a.m., they were forced to stop service at 11:00 p.m. while the curfew was in effect to allow patrons adequate time to get home by midnight.
Employees were exempt from the curfew, but this loss of operating hours, combined with the week-plus of closures during the storm, forced many bars and restaurants to close and many remain so, at least on a temporary basis.
Workers depending on tips from those lost hours now must look for other sources of income.
Since the storm swept through the city near the end of the month, some establishments may face difficulties in making their rent payments.
These difficulties could lead to more closures, as a city known for its bars and restaurants still struggles to recover from the biggest flood event in U.S. history.