LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A long-time Las Vegas valley Mexican restaurant is forced to temporarily close its doors and lay off its employees due to a sinkhole.
According to owner Javier Barajas, the restaurant on East Desert Inn Road is closed because of a sinkhole that is threatening the structure’s collapse.
“I was in another restaurant and my daughter called me and said, ‘hey, dad, the floors started cracking and popping off,'” Barajas said.
In an email, he said that they first noticed cracks in the walls, and then the main dining room floor opened up.
Once the floor started popping and caving in, everyone inside had to leave immediately.
“We are currently working to fully evaluate the situation, including the extent of the damage, so we can repair and be back to our wonderful daily routines, with it, the camaraderie we experienced with our guests.”
In the beginning, no one knew what was causing the sink hole, but it turned out it was all due to a water leak.
“We didn’t know exactly what was wrong; if it was the roof or the floor or the walls. I mean we had no idea,” Barajas said. “Right now, the general contractor and the plumber are looking for all the leaks and trying to find out the problems and see if we can save the building.”
He lamented having to lay off employees due to the situation, saying, “It’s very sad, especially because we have almost 90 employees we had to lay off, and we don’t know if they are going to find jobs soon.”
Many of Barajas’ employees have been with him since day one and have shared the good and the bad.
He says the restaurant has suffered through other crises over the years, including a fire that destroyed the building, the recession and the coronavirus closure in March and said “we will overcome this.”
Lindo Michoacan has been named the best Mexican Restaurant in the Las Vegas valley for the last 20 years.
“I never, you know, ahh — expected, you know, my restaurant to be this famous,” said Barajas. He later noted, “This is our baby. This is part of Las Vegas.”
Erik Pappa, director of public communications for Clark County, sent a statement to 8 News Now regarding the building, which reads:
“Clark County Building Department inspectors visited the site today. The structure of the building appears to be fine; however, due to an underground waterline break, several areas of the slab have settled and will be replaced. The restaurant’s contractor is in the process of pulling a building permit to replace the slab and a plumbing permit to replace the leaking pipe responsible for the slab’s settling.”
Barajas expects the location to be back open in a year. He also asks the Las Vegas community to please support local restaurants, whether it is take out, delivery or gift certificates, as this is a time they could all use the help.