Two of the downtown BIDs are setting up Open Street spaces

The Hudson Square BID is building out curbside dining areas for its restaurants, starting with Getting Hungry, Adoro Lei and Houseman. The BID plans to build what they are calling “parklets” as more restaurants receive outdoor dining permits. The BID is providing all the planters, furniture and umbrellas for the restaurants, which has to be a relief. Sherwin Williams donated the paints.

And as of last Friday, the Downtown Alliance is closing off Pine Street from Pearl to William and Pearl from Broad to Hanover Square to make room for in-street outdoor dining — a nice step up from curbside. The closure will run from 5p to 11p on Friday and from noon to 11p on Saturday and Sunday. The program will continue through Sept. 7.

Crown Shy and Black Fox will have operations on Pine, and on Pearl, Fraunces Tavern as well as the Porterhouse Brew Co will be open. In the coming days more restaurants on these streets may take advantage of the program. The Alliance is taking care of the barricades to close the street to traffic, but the restaurants will be responsible for setting up, breaking down and cleaning the seating areas.

But here’s the downer: the Hudson Square BID estimates that the area, which is predominantly a commercial business district with little residential, has seen foot traffic decline 65-75 since the pandemic. Just another indicator of what our local stores and restaurants are up against.

And for the record, these new areas are not public spaces — in the case of the Hudson Square BID, the “park” part of the name is referring to the parking space it takes up. They are in fact private use of public space — like any sidewalk cafe — and it’s great that this is working for restaurants during these times. But some thought could be given to creating real open space for all to use as well.


1 Comment

  1. Darn– i wish we had a TriBeCa BID to help those of us who have spent lots of $$$ on their outdoor seating spaces.
    Kudos to Hudson Square BID and DowntwnAlliance for stepping up!