CB1 Tribeca Committee: The Unofficial Minutes (September)

As covered here.

It’ll be Saturday, Oct. 3. Info here.

The city’s Board of Standards and Appeals requires gyms to get physical-culture permits, dating from the days when “gym” also meant “sex club.” (Now working out is the new sex, but that’s another story.) The vote was 4-0 for I.C.E. NYC opening at 93 Worth later this year and CrossFit Tribeca’s second space box, at 281 Broadway, which opened late last year.

When DDG, the developer of 100 Franklin (the two-triangle condo rendered above), went to the Manhattan Borough President’s Office to look into which street address it might use for the project, it discovered that the 1945 co-naming of Sixth Avenue as Avenue of the Americas stopped at White Street—leaving the block of Sixth Ave. between White and Franklin in limbo. The DDG rep said the the MBP’s office can’t assign a Sixth Ave. address to the site because Sixth Ave/ doesn’t technically exist, and the MBP’s office is said to crave consistency. Committee members crave it, too, so they were perplexed by the Department of Buildings referring the bar under construction a block north as 11 Sixth Avenue. Somewhat oddly, DDG refused to actually say that it plans to rename 100 Franklin “One Avenue of the Americas,” and I’d wager it’ll get marketed as “1AoA.” (DDG can choose from 1, 3, 5, or 7 Avenue of the Americas once this gets ironed out.) Finally, a neighbor in attendance said what the rest of us were thinking: Who cares? We’re all going to call it Sixth Avenue anyway! Vote: 4-0-1 in favor of allowing it. Also, DDG said that Barnett Newman Plaza, the semi-developed parklet between Sixth Ave. and Church, has been accepted into the Department of Transportation’s parks program but the project has yet to enter the design phase. In the meantime, we still have those old renderings to keep us warm.

As you read here, ESquared Hospitality (of the BLT restaurants) is opening a second outpost of Midtown’s Wayfarer in the former Dean’s space at 349 Greenwich. With closing hours of midnight (Sunday through Thursday) and 1 a.m. (Friday and Saturday), it gave the committee nothing to object to. Vote: 6-0. This is probably the right moment to confess that I left before I could gather the application materials for this and the subsequent items on the agenda. In this case, it hardly matters. If you want to know what the Wayfarer will be like, go to the existing one.

Joe Crotty, who ticked off the committee by ignoring its stipulations and going straight to the State Liquor Authority, is no longer involved in Tara of Tribeca at 20 Warren; he sold it to John Moran, who was to be the manager (and who owns the Killarney Rose on Pearl St.). Moran had nothing nice to say about Crotty, including that the space was so badly wired that without a total redo it would’ve caught on fire. Unfortunately, Moran wanted later closing hours (2 a.m. Thursday through Saturday) than the State Liquor Authority had OKed, so the committee had to slowly insist on closing at midnight Sunday through Thursday and 1 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. Vote: 7-0. (The menu is posted on the door, FYI, and the space doesn’t look bad.)

White Street wants to put tables on White Street (the W. Broadway side is not an option because of those stairs), and the committee doesn’t generally agree to tables on side streets, but the only leverage it has is not about the tables (which the city will approve) but with the liquor license for those tables. The application was for six tables with 20 seats total, with closing hours of 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 1 a.m. Friday and Saturday. Two neighbors showed up to testify against it, even though one acknowledged that White Street has been much better about noise than Churrascaria Tribeca was. One committee member astutely pointed out that the two six-top (!) tables at either end of the row would probably be a big issue, and the restaurant agreed to change them to four-tops. And the outside closing time will be 11 p.m. seven days a week, which I think is later than the committee usually allows even for large streets, but I could be wrong. Vote: 5-0-1, then 6-0 when a member changed her mind.

As you know, the Tribeca couple behind Maman on Centre Street is planning a second location in the former home of Maslow 6 (211 W. Broadway). The space isn’t vented, so they’ll be doing the bulk of the prepping and cooking at the Soho outpost and in their forthcoming offsite kitchen in Greenpoint; they’ll use warmers to heat food up. The set-up will be similar to Centre Street, with to-go in front and seating in back. The hours were described as “within CB1’s guidelines” (no one ever said them out loud), so the committee could find no fault. Vote: 6-0. P.S. Every time I walk by I think about how the Tribeca stroller brigade is not going to be happy with those stairs….

Jean Dupuy and chef Tatsuya Sekiguchi (formerly of Sushi Yasuda) plan a high-end sushi restaurant at 175 Franklin, next to Shinola, designed by Shigeru Ban and with a whiskey bar in the basement. They say there will be no music on the ground floor, and any music downstairs must not be audible upstairs. Nonetheless, neighbors are said to be concerned (none showed up) because there’s a skylight in back, and skylights allow noise to seep out. A previous applicant had been told that he had to handle the construction, and not the landlord, who was described as unreliable. (He once allowed the building to be rented out for “raves.”) Dupuy went door-to-door to talk to people, and persuaded many that the plans are on the up and up. The problem, really, is that because the restaurant is omakase (and therefore meals can take a while), they’d like to do a last seating at 10 p.m., which means they want to serve alcohol later than CB1 Tribeca usually allows on a side street. (I think the application was for 1 a.m. on weeknights and 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and CB1 prefers an hour earlier.) Alas, I left the meeting at 8:15 p.m., when the discussion turned to whether a high-end restaurant would necessarily be quieter than a low-end one. (Um, yes. Especially one with so few seats.) If anyone knows the outcome, let me know. UPDATE: Dupuy says they got 1 a.m. seven nights a week and they can come back to try for later after they’ve proven not to be a nuisance.



  1. Re: sidewalk cafes
    I would like to know who is responsible for monitoring whether original agreements under which sidewalk cafes are granted — number of tables, liquor or no liquor, hours of operation — are being strictly observed. It is my impression that once permissions are granted violations in these areas are regularly committed. What’s a few more tables? Oh sure let’s just stay open later . . . who will care or know? And if someone does, will they bother to report us?

    • I have raised this issue with CB1 repeatedly as the restaurants on Reade Street have spread quite a bit leaving a narrow sidewalk. The response is usually that YOU have to take photos and submit complaints to the Dept of Consumer Affairs who are supposed to regulate and monitor sidewalk cafes. The sidewalk café at the Smyth hotel leave a very narrow area and then a subway grating. The short answer is there is almost no enforcement or monitoring and no sanctions if you get caught violating the conditions. Sidewalks are rapidly becoming obstacle courses.