Thursday, March 2, 2023

Restaurant shanties will only be a spring/summer thing

Crains New York

With spring rapidly approaching, talks are ongoing between the City Council, Mayor Eric Adams’ administration and the restaurant industry. It seems increasingly likely that the bill will create a seasonal program that would require owners to dismantle their curbside setups each fall, two council sources said Monday.

It could look much like the April-to-November program outlined last year in an initial council bill. The measure has stalled for months amid uncertainty over how new dining structures would be designed and which agency would supervise them.

It’s unclear how well a seasonal version will sit with restaurant owners, many of whom spent tens of thousands of dollars to build dining sheds and might not have the money or storage space to take them down each fall.

“Where are we supposed to store these things?” wondered Patrick Fromuth, an employee at Branded Saloon in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn. Fromuth helped construct the bar’s elaborate, colorful streetside dining structure, which Grub Street called a work of art.

“How are we supposed to fight back in the warmer months to get the cars out of the way, to redo it?” he said.

As Streetsblog reported Monday, the latest proposal could keep outdoor dining under the auspices of the Department of Transportation, which has led the program throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, rather than shift it to the smaller Department of Consumer and Worker Protection, as last year’s bill had called for.

Outdoor dining has remade the city’s streetscape and has served as a lifeline for thousands of restaurants during the pandemic, allowing them to expand seating onto the sidewalk and into the street during a time when many New Yorkers were reluctant to eat indoors.

But it also saddled some streets with unsightly plywood sheds that sat largely empty during the colder months, and it prompted lawsuits from residents who claimed the sheds fostered noise and sanitation issues.

The existing bill, introduced by Marjorie Velázquez of the Bronx, would allow so-called roadway cafés—tables and chairs in the curb lanes or parking lanes of city streets—to be up and running from April 1 through Oct. 31.

Sidewalk cafés, by contrast, could stay open year-round under Velázquez’s bill and would be similar to those that existed before the pandemic. Restaurateurs would need to get separate two-year licenses for each type of setup, paying $255 for a curbside café and between $225 and $510 for sidewalk seating.


Anonymous said...

Get rid of them once and for all !

"EVERYTHING woke turns to shit"
~ President Donald J Trump

Anonymous said...

Take a hike, big government, big regulation commie !

Anonymous said...

NYC Shanty Syndrome must be cured.

Anonymous said...

The Overton Window is open to Crap like this !
I would not spend a dime in one for the "Special" privilege to eat in the gutter.

Anonymous said...

Don't take them down, where are the homeless going to go to relieve themselves?

Anonymous said...

We are not Paris.
We do not have Paris weather.
We are more like rainy Tokyo or London.
We need underground concourse eateries.

Underground concourses would also deal with congestion by moving pedestrian traffic underground at the citi center.

Anonymous said...

That makes sense. I wonder what they’ll do with those structures in the winter? Shelters for the homeless? More free car storage? Firewood? Meeting place for QAnon creeps?

Kitara said...

@"Take a hike, big government, big regulation commie !"

Exactly, regulations are for socialists and communists. Let the free market decide. Who cares if that means letting corporations poison the Sheeple with tainted food, or destroy their towns with toxic waste, or poison their air with carbon monoxide and other pollutants, poison their water with toxic run off from chemical plants and fracking.
As long as the communists don't get to regulate business, freedom shall prevail.
Hallelujah !

Anonymous said...

"NYC Shanty Syndrome" LOL...

Anonymous said...

Again why do we need these empty structures that take away parking spots? No one is using them. Just an eyesore and a huge inconvenience.