CB1 Tribeca Committee: The Unofficial Minutes (November)

STREET-ACTIVITY PERMIT: WASHINGTON MARKET SCHOOL BLOCK PARTY
It’s a party for kids (enrolled in Washington Market School and not) on Saturday, May 3, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.on Duane between Church and W. Broadway. There will be a suggested donation, and activities are likely to be $1 per. Plus, free entertainment. Vote: 5-0.

PHYSICAL-CULTURE PERMIT: PLANET FITNESS (370 CANAL)
The cut-rate gym chain Planet Fitness is opening an outpost in the basement below the Canal Street post office, accessed via a retail space in the Sheraton Tribeca. Vote: 5-0.

PHYSICAL-CULTURE PERMIT: BIKRAM YOGA SOHO (404-406 BROADWAY)
Covered here.

SIDEWALK-CAFÉ LICENSE: EDWARD’S (136 W. BROADWAY)
No changes. Vote: 5-0.

SIDEWALK-CAFÉ LICENSE: CERCLE ROUGE (241 W. BROADWAY)
No changes. Vote: 5-0.

LIQUOR-LICENSE APPLICATION: AÑEJO (31 WALKER/301 CHURCH)
As you read here first, the folks behind Hell’s Kitchen Mexican restaurant Añejo are opening a 125-seat outpost in the former Bread Tribeca (and before that, Barocco) space at Church and Walker. Unlike Bread, Añejo will be on two floors, with the basement being used for “overflow, tastings, and private events.” They came in asking for the closing hours that CB1 Tribeca usually approves (1 a.m. Sunday-Thursday, 2 a.m. Friday-Saturday), armed with a letter of support from the uptown location’s block association. A committee member said that “neighborhood media”—you’re reading it, I think—had indicated that Añejo was as much of a bar as a restaurant (I did point out that Añejo calls itself a “tequileria”…), but the owners said that’s not so. No neighbors showed up to voice concern, so the committee saw no reason to object. Vote: 5-0.

LIQUOR-LICENSE APPLICATION: PESCADO (221 W. BROADWAY/5 WHITE)
The Churrascaria Tribeca replacement is covered here.

LIQUOR-LICENSE ALTERATION: SAZÓN (105 READE)
Sazón wants to be able to serve alcohol till 4 a.m.—presumably only on Friday and Saturday, but it was never stated—and predictably, its neighbors strongly object. The newish general manager, Edward Rodriguez (who said he had had a Seaport restaurant till Sandy wiped it out) seemed surprised that the committee wasn’t really willing to agree in the hope that Sazón will behave. Neighbors complained about crowds being queued up outside before entering, noise from crowds leaving and saying goodbye (with the restaurant doing little to disperse them), urination, vomit, litter, smoking, police officers parking in front of the hydrant across the street, “hard looks” from patrons being asked to move out of the way, harassment by SUV drivers (one having claimed to be with the FBI), and more. Rodriguez said the noise never goes on past 2 a.m., which the neighbors scoffed at. He pointed out that Ward III has 4 a.m. closing, but that was over CB1’s objection—the State Liquor Authority approved it anyway—and that the crowds could be coming from Super Linda or Ward III or wherever. From my point of view, since you asked, it was a ridiculous debate: The folks who go to Sazón are loud, as anyone who walks by can’t help but notice, and the restaurant keeps its windows open much longer beyond the 8 p.m. limit on the liquor license; moreover, possibly because they don’t live around here, and so they’re not invested in the area, the patrons clearly treat the street like shit. (Take a walk down Reade some morning.) Rodriguez, for his part, says he’s trying to change the culture and the clientele, but that it’ll take time. The committee suggested that he work harder to communicate with neighbors, and that everyone get involved with a block association being started up. Vote (in opposition to the 4 a.m. hours): 5-0-1.

LIQUOR-LICENSE APPLICATION: 11 SIXTH AVE.
Back in July, Gregory Nardello—who owns the building (the small, two-story one where the Brite Buy liquor store was)—asked for 4 a.m. closing for a tiny, two-story, 24-hour diner/café. The proposed name was Tribeca Grand Café, but that may have gone by the wayside, if I know lawyers. Anyway, he withdrew the application when it looked like the committee would object. But he was back asking for 4 a.m., with a slightly changed application that showed an enclosed sidewalk café as part of the premises and a seven-table mezzanine; the place will now be open 22 hours, closing 4 a.m. to 6 a.m. He thinks the place will do well late because other spots that are open then serve abbreviated menus. The committee spent a lot of time noting how non-residential the area is (for now?), with the all-commercial 33 Sixth Ave., the Tribeca Grand hotel, and the Greenstreets triangle, the parking lot. As one member pointed out, that part of Tribeca—if you include over to Sixth Ave.—is sort of the Nightlife Triangle, now that Los Americanos, Bisutoro, Macao Trading Co., and (I think) the Tribeca Grand have 4 a.m. liquor licenses; I still don’t think anyone realizes the extent to which the hotel is a late-night hotspot. No neighbors showed up, and the owner rejected the possibility of a 2:30 a.m. compromise. The vote was 2-2-2, so the full board will have to decide at its full meeting in a couple weeks.

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