Middle East petitions City of Cambridge for expansion into shuttered T.T. The Bear’s space

UPDATE 12:47 p.m.: There is now an online petition that people can sign.

Long before T.T. The Bear’s Place hosted its final show last month, speculation has been rampant over what will become of the longtime Cambridge rock club located at 10 Brookline Ave. in Central Square. Less than two weeks after the closing of T.T.’s, it looks like the space could still be home to live music.

Middle East Restaurant and Nightclub owners Joseph and Nabil Sater, who late last year acquired the buildings that house the Middle East Zuzu, Central Convenience, and T.T.’s for $7.1 million, last night began circulating a citizen petition to increase their operation into 10 Brookline Ave. The petition, which you can read in full below, was passed around last night during the opening night of the 2015 Boston Fuzzstival.

When reached this morning, Joseph Sater tells Vanyaland that the plan for the T.T.’s space is to “leave it the way it is.” The Saters, with the petition, will then go to Cambridge licensing boards to operate the space as its “own room”, separate from the 194-person capacity Upstairs venue and the 575-capacity Downstairs hall.

Not much is known beyond that.

T.T. The Bear’s Place closed last month after owner Bonney Bouley told WickedLocal that she could not afford the rent increase set forth by the Saters after their purchase of the property.

Read the petition below. It will be available to sign tonight at the Middle East and ZuZu.

“We, the undersigned, wish to be recorded as being in strong support of the Middle East Restaurant and ZuZu located at 4, 6 & 8 Brookline Street and 472 & 480 Massachusetts Avenue being able to increase their capacity of The Middle East and ZuZu by an increase in there occupancy and space by expanding into 10 Brookline Street (formerly T.T. The Bear’s) to their Restaurant/club.

“The Middle East Restaurant has proven to be a responsible neighbor, citizen, friend and taxpayer of Cambridge and their existing operation is and has been well managed and run with the welfare of their neighbors and patrons in mind.

“We feel that this increase would have no negative impact on the neighborhood and in fact would be a benefit to the Central Square area and the City of Cambridge given that they would merely be occupying the space previously occupied by a club that did not serve food.”

Below is a scan of a petition sheet, courtesy of the Middle East:


Hat tip to Eric Gittleman on Twitter.