DENVER — Some Denver restaurants have been struggling to stay afloat for a long time.
And now, they’re losing more than a quarter of their customers in the past year alone.
And many are asking, “Why are they still here?”
“I have a very difficult time understanding why this is happening.
This is a huge part of our business,” said Steve Jones, who owns the La Boulange restaurant in Denver.
Jones opened La Bousange in 2003.
The restaurant had been serving food for more than 30 years, but last year, the market tanked.
“The restaurant industry is a big business.
The industry has a lot of things going on,” said Jones.
Jones says he’s losing customers because the prices of items are so high.
“I am just trying to do what I have always done,” he said.
Jones and his wife opened LaBoulange after working at a restaurant for eight years.
The couple opened their first restaurant in 2015, but it wasn’t long before the economy crashed.
“Our business is really down.
We have lost customers for quite a while now.
That’s what I think is happening,” said LaBou, who works with a computer engineering degree.
The LaBouls say they’ve tried everything to keep their businesses afloat.
“We’ve been looking at all of our options,” said Tony, who opened La Bougy last year.
The family has also been trying to find a way to help their community.
Tony says they are in the process of buying a home and building a new one.
“There’s a lot we can do to support our community.
We’ve been working on that.
And we’re getting close to getting there,” he added.
LaBoulie has become a rallying point for many business owners.
“People want to come in and make a change,” Jones said.
The city of Denver has a number of initiatives underway to help restaurants survive.
They are:In order to help the restaurant industry survive, the city has created a new fund that will be used to purchase homes for new businesses.
In addition, the Denver City Council has approved an ordinance that will create a tax credit for businesses that buy equipment.