MANHATTAN – One month after a chain-reaction crash sent a taxi careening through an Upper East Side bus shelter before slamming into the front of Amura Japanese Cuisine, restaurant staff now tells Upper East Site they are only one-to-two weeks from reopening for indoor dining and delivery orders have resumed for those seeking their sushi fix.
The only indication Amura is back in business after the devastating crash four weeks ago is a fresh set of folded menus in a plastic holder attached to the sidewalk shed covering the damaged storefront between East 81st and 82nd Streets— which vandals have now tagged with graffiti— spotted by Upper East Site on Saturday.
Inspectors from the city’s Department of Buildings issued a partial vacate order for the building on the day of the wreck, Friday, July 2nd— identifying the restaurant as unsafe— noting the storefront “sustained extensive damage” and that “two-vertical cast-iron support columns broke into pieces” from the force of the impact of the out-of-control Nissan taxi van.
Permits filed with the city show Amura Japanese Cuisine needs an estimated $15,000 in repairs— the architect lists on the permit application that it the ground floor pace needs “replacement of storefront and minor interior partition and ceiling/soffit repair.”
Investigators say say it was just before 5:00 pm on July 2nd, when the taxi driver lost control of his van on Second Avenue and crashed into the restaurant— the taxi had been rear-ended by another car, which was rear-ended itself by a third car.
Despite the trail of devastation on the sidewalk, there were only two minor injures– the driver of the taxi whose airbag did not deploy and the 51-year-old man who was struck.