Jump to content

LES/EV nightlife under attack


Recommended Posts

Suddenly the booming nightlife scene below and above Houston on the East Side isn't popular any more. At least with some local residents, who have organized a coalition to agitate the licensing authorities and MARCH ("multi-agency-response-to-community-hotspots") to target bars are allegedly disrupting quality of life.

 

There is an article about the coalition in this week's Time Out - register to read online - and a piece on MARCH raids in The Village Voice.

 

I am trying not to be biased against the (apparently nameless) coalition by the prominence of Rebecca Moore as one of its spokespersons. Ms Moore, a musician and composer, commits her own brand of quiet noise pollution - I have seen her perform twice, second time by accident. But that's neither here nor there, and I do nevertheless have the feeling that many of these community activists simply want the neighborhood frozen in time as it was when they moved in. In other words, they are not seeking a return to drug dealing on street corners and random gunfire. But nor are they prepared for the economic upsurge which has transformed the area to inconvenience them. I have noticed some bars on Clinton with "no more bars on Clinton" notices in their windows - which one might think was a little self-serving. I guess it's a case of: everyone who moves into the neighborhood after me is guilty of gentrifying it.

 

There's no question that specific violations should be addressed, but there seems to be an objection to the business even existing - which surely has a social subtext. Also, I'd specifically point out that the problem - and it is a problem - of smokers congregating on the street late at night is something bar owners warned about before the no-smoking legislation was enacted. They said it would be disruptive; they said they couldn't police it (is it supposed to be the bar-back's job to go out and tell customers to pipe down?); and they were right. The city failed to make any plans to deal with this nuisance. It's hardly a police matter if people are simply conversing at normal volume, however annoying it may be to residents above.

 

Ms Moore says she may have to move out of New York because of all the noise and disturbance. Er... Okay.

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 808
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Suddenly the booming nightlife scene below and above Houston on the East Side isn't popular any more. At least with some local residents, who have organized a coalition to agitate the licensing autho

I lived through a lot of this in Soho, London in the late 1980s and 1990s. It is infuriating when laundromats close down to be replaced by identikit sushi bars and lounges. But when you choose to li

E-mail just received from an activist:     The 7-Eleven will replace Bar on A. I thought we wanted fewer bars.   (Of course, the serious point is that if you drive out bars, they won't be rep

Assholes from suburbs move in to feel bohemian, then can't sleep. Ahhhh.

 

Leonard Cohen:

 

"New York is cold but I like where I'm living

There's music on Clinton Street all through the evening.

Fortunately it stops by midnight

So I can gets some zeds."

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have opined before on the supposed quiet of the country side. Noises in order through the night: youfs in cortinas going to the pub, deaf geriatrics next door listening to the tele, youfs in cortinas returning from the pub, owls, rutting hedgehogs, rodents in the roof space, milk lorries, wood pigeons with rutting ambitions, the entirely redundant alarm clock.

 

Edit: and don't get me started on the smell.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Anybody know the current regs on siting of alcohol licenses in NYC?

 

At one point, you couldn't be within 200 feet of a school's front door, or any point of a building used for religious worship. You couldn't hold an alcoholic beverage outside the walls of a licensed property, except in their own, enclosed terrace or in their approved tables area out front.

 

Enforcing the current regs would mean the socializers outside would have to leave their beverage of choice inside, which would shorten the stay outdoors, I'd think.

 

Rutting woodpidgeons and hedgehogs are probably less of a concern on Avenue B, I'd think.

Link to post
Share on other sites

you can't bring a beverage from a bar outside onto the street, nor can you have an open container in public, even if its in a brown paper bag..

 

i have some friends who've been living in the East Village for 20 years.. the bar downstairs uses a portion of the inner courtyard as it's garden/smoking lounge/outdoor space.. it drives the residents nuts.. they've complained to the bartenders, the bar owners, the landlord, and they've worked out a deal whereby the bar agrees not to use the backyard after midnight, which the bartender refuses to abide by..

 

the fact that their three kids can't go to bed at a normal hour because of all the noise doesn't seem to faze anyone downstairs..

 

i think my point is that while yes, there are a bunch of people who have moved in and gentrified the neighborhood, there were a whole lot more people who've been there longer than most residents have been alive and who can't afford to move anywhere else, who've had their lives immeasurably changed by those willing to pay seven bucks for a bud long neck..

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that some of the resentment comes from the fact that the noisy throngs clogging the bars and streets on weekends don't even live in the neighborhood,use it as a playground,and then go home to their clean quiet suburban towns....except that this has been going on in most of lower Manhattan for decades.Take a stroll on Bleecker St. or St.Marks Place in the wee hours of a Sunday morning...dodge the pools of vomit,broken bottles and garbage...

Link to post
Share on other sites

In terms of sheer density,the number of restaurants lounges and bars is higher then it has ever been,especially in the East Village and LES.Local residents who want and need simple local services like laundromats,produce stands and hardware stores cringe as these services fold and are the commercial rents climb out of reach...On a personal note,I've lived on the edge of Soho for 35 years-I walked around local streets yesterday and really was more bored and disgusted than ever by the retail scene.Not a drop of art left,Very expensive conservative retail clothing,makeup,and doodads catering to I don't know who.Precious little[Moss,Pastec]with any cutting edge....and No local services.The fact is,as a downtown resident,you often feel like the city has often forgotten you in pursuit of the almighty tourist $$$.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Anybody know the current regs on siting of alcohol licenses in NYC?

 

At one point, you couldn't be within 200 feet of a school's front door, or any point of a building used for religious worship. You couldn't hold an alcoholic beverage outside the walls of a licensed property, except in their own, enclosed terrace or in their approved tables area out front.

 

Enforcing the current regs would mean the socializers outside would have to leave their beverage of choice inside, which would shorten the stay outdoors, I'd think.

 

There is a discussion in the Time Out article. Yes, there's the school regulation, which it claims has been hapahazardly enforced, depending on whether people have bothered to complain. I recall Schiller's had quite a battle getting a license - the measurement was pretty tight. There is also a regulation which limits the number of licenses in close proximity but I can't remember the specifics. I imagine some streets must be pushing the limit.

 

One thing is for sure - you can't take drinks outside. The smokers and their friends leave their drinks on the bar, often with a beer mat on top. Some bars supply little "reserved" signs you can use to keep your seats.

Link to post
Share on other sites
In terms of sheer density,the number of restaurants lounges and bars is higher then it has ever been,especially in the East Village and LES.Local residents who want and need simple local services like laundromats,produce stands and hardware stores cringe as these services fold and are the commercial rents climb out of reach...

I don't think that's a problem in the neighborhoods discussed. Off the top of my head I can think of six laundry places, two hardware stores and five or six produce stands within 4 blocks of where one of those "activists" lives.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

×
×
  • Create New...