With Kim Ledger's aid, a pal moves ahead with a Brooklyn "hub" for the late star's friends

By Chris Willard
July 25, 2008 04:05 PM
downbythehipster.com; inset: Lisa Rose/JPI

Heath Ledger‘s father is helping one of his friends follow through with plans to open a Brooklyn restaurant-bar in which the late actor had been a silent partner.

At the time of his death in January, the actor was working on plans to open a bar and restaurant in the Williamsburg area of Brooklyn, his friend and business partner Jud Mongell tells PEOPLE.

The nautical-themed eatery is still set to open later this summer thanks to Ledger’s father, Kim, who agreed to continue funding the venture after taking over his son’s estate.

“Kim has been very supportive, Mongell said. “He has been to the space, and he is happy that the project Heath talked about so much is being finished.”

Many of Heath’s cronies have already given the restaurant their blessing. His Australian friends who flew into New York City for the Dark Knight premiere visited last week to connect with some of Heath’s local friends. “Kim is happy that we all have a hub,” Mongell said.

According to Mongell, Heath was very involved with plans for the restaurant, drawing early floor plans, handpicking designers and artists, even pitching potential names. (Possibilities include BrightSide and Five Leaves).

Heath Found Locale

The restaurant’s location, on a street corner across from McCarren Park, was also chosen by Ledger while he and Mongell were out skateboarding.

“I showed him other spots and he wouldn’t look at anything else. He liked this corner,” Mongell said. “He envisioned basically just hanging out at the park across the street. He was a big fan of Williamsburg.”

The nightlife and hospitality blog Down By The Hipster first broke the news with an exclusive photo tour of the in-progress restaurant.