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CBGB’s to close on Halloween 2006

The legendary punk venue announces its end…

CBGB is set to close its doors for the final time on Halloween 2006.

The legendary New York music venue, the cradle for the ’70s punk scene and launch pad for bands such as The Ramones and Talking Heads, announced the agreement with its landlord yesterday (December 7).

The deal with the Bowery Residents Committee (BRC), who own a 45-year lease on the property at 315 Bowery, seemed impossible following the expiration of the previous lease on August 31.

However, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office interceded and helped reach an agreement which avoided a potentially bitter court battle.

According to Billboard, CBGB proprietor Hilly Kristal said: “It’s been little stipulations, back and forth – we agreed, we didn’t agree. We finally got to a point where we agreed with each other.”

Muzzy Rosenblatt, BRC executive said that the agreement would let his homeless advocacy group “concentrate on helping the needy and homeless of New York City”.

A non-profit organisation, the BRC houses 250 people above the famous club and CBGB is its only commercial tenant.

CBGB lease with the group expired at midnight on August 31 and the BRC announced that it wanted the club out after a five-year fight.

Kristal – who opened the venue in December 1973 – was served with an eviction notice a week later and the two sides went to court. The rent of the club has now been raised to $35,000 following the new agreement, compared with the old deal’s $19,000.

Kristal must now leave the venue by October 31, but the proprietor has revealed that he is already looking for a new venue.

Other sites in lower Manhattan are being visited by Kristal with a view to reopen CBGB once the new deal expires, and a month of closing celebrations are expected at the old space.

Kristal has also revealed that he is considering opening a branch in Las Vegas and is unconcerned about creating the ambience of the original CBGB.

“Things are different all the time – look at the 70s, the 80s, the 90s,” he said. “The most important thing is we’re keeping the integrity of CBGB. It won’t be exactly the same, but it will have the same ingredients.”