Restraining order protecting Chinese Cultural Center lifted, restaurant owner fights back
PHOENIX (KSAZ) - A temporary restraining order protecting the Chinese Cultural Center was lifted today by a judge.
The order was in place to protect certain elements from a new developer.
Now the owner of Szechwan Palace, a restaurant, is appealing the lift.
"Stops the developer from getting rid of all of the Chinese elements there. Things like the Chinese roof, the Chinese statues, the Chinese garden, the meditation garden, those things, we may only have ten days left to keep them there," said Jack Wilenchik, the attorney for Szechwan Palace. "We're going to fight as hard as we can. The Chinese community is going to fight as hard as it can to save them."
Wilenchik says the developer wants to turn the area into office spaces.
"Arizona's China Town. This is Phoenix's China Town. This is where the Chinese community feels at home. And for the second time now, somebody's threatening to destroy it," Wilenchik said.
Wilenchik says changes to the iconic roof and garden would interfere with the restaurant's business, and they are fighting to make sure that doesn't happen.
"The problem with what the judge just said, is that the judge said this does not interfere with the use of your business. How is that the case if he's going to lose money and have to shut down at night because of what they're doing?" Wilenchik said.
The judge's order calls for the restriction to be lifted in 10 days.