Add another name to the ever-growing list of diners that have closed up shop here in Queens after decades of serving up great food and good memories. This time, it’s the Flagship Diner that will close its doors on July 22, more than 53 years after it first opened on Queens Boulevard in Briarwood.
The property the eatery sits on was sold two years ago, and the diner’s owners originally planned to stay through the end of their lease in October 2019. Who could blame them, though, for accepting a buyout and closing early, considering the writing was already on the wall?
It remains to be seen what exactly will be built on the property, but a seven-story, 64-unit residential structure has long been the plan for the site. If housing is in fact constructed there, we hope that most, if not all, of the units are inexpensive enough for Central Queens residents — the same people who lost their beloved neighborhood diner — to afford.
Area civic leader Seymour Schwartz put it best, telling the Chronicle this week that the Flagship Diner is “a place where everyone knows your name.” Sadly, Briarwood isn’t the first neighborhood to lose such a community staple.
And in all likelihood, it won’t be the last.