SOHO — Longtime health food spot Spring Street Natural may be leaving its namesake block — but it's keeping its name.
Owner Rus Schoenfeld wants to move his 44-year-old restaurant from 62 Spring St. to a multi-level space in Nolita when his lease expires at the end of the year, he told Community Board 2's liquor license committee on Tuesday night.
But the name, concept and menu will remain the same, he explained.
Schoenfeld said the move is "not by choice." He said his landlord wants to charge six times the amount he's currently paying in rent.
His landlord, Evelyne Wassman, said what she's asking is reasonable for the neighborhood.
"The neighborhood is changing," Wassman said. "They don’t want to pay market rate."
Schoenfeld said he has not yet signed a lease for 98 Kenmare St., but if he does, he hopes to open in January 2016.
The Kenmare Street space is made up of two floors and was previously home to Japanese restaurant MaisonO, which used the basement level as a nightclub that neighbors said made too much noise.
Residents at the meeting were concerned the next tenant would create a similar atmosphere.
“The downstairs space has been a great temptation to previous tenants to operate a club,” said Guy Ventresca, head of the co-op board at 86 Kenmare, a neighboring building.
MaisonO's former owner did not immediately respond to an email.
Shoenfeld promised he would not replicate his predecessor, and said he plans to replace the dark storefront that gives the spot a "nighclub-like" feel with new windows to let in more natural light.
CB2 voted to approve the eatery's application for a full liquor license on Tuesday night.