Billy Rieger, owner of the bar, said the closing is “bittersweet,” but he’s hopeful that Bad Billy’s will be reincarnated in the city-owned Wheeler Opera House or some other space in town.Rieger is one of four finalists in a request-for-proposals process to take over the space currently occupied by Bentley’s.
ASPEN DOWNTOWN COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE – The Bad Billy’s blowout is upon us.The restaurant in the former Cooper Street Pier building will close its doors to the public after Saturday as demolition nears for the downtown watering hole.Although Bad Billy’s opened just over two years ago, the space is familiar to longtime Aspenites. The Cooper Street Pier operated in the space in much of the same manner for 40 years. The establishment is decidedly on the low-end of Aspen restaurants and specializes in cheap beer, burgers, pool and foosball.Sometime later this spring, the building at 508 E. Cooper Ave. will be torn down to make way for a redevelopment project that will feature a 4,500-square-foot penthouse, street-level retail and a subgrade restaurant that, per an agreement with the city of Aspen, must be “affordable.”
By Curtis Wackerle, March 8, 2011 Aspen Daily News