The meeting started with a presentation from the City’s Department of Transportation presentation concerning the Broadway intersection at Flushing Ave and Graham Ave. DOT wants to redesign the area, based on requests for pedestrian improvements from both community members and NYPD. The plan would include building sidewalk extensions.
A proposed hotel at 25 Stewart requested support for an application for the Board of Standards and Appeals to continue construction as the hotel is “substantially completed.” A representative from the hotel’s legal team claimed that they had completed 75% of the excavation, and the environmental remediation process took longer than anticipated. This received a lot of pushback from the board, who doubted that the project would materially benefit nearby neighbors. Board members were concerned about how truthful the owners were in this process. A favorite quote I heard: “No one who lives and works here cares about you having views of the skyline for tourists coming to the neighborhood.”
Then there was another hotel presentation that went over a lot better, at 361 Bedford, The Moxy Williamsburg.
Many neighbors spoke out against a potential bar at 211 Nassau Avenue, pointing out that there are already several bars within a radius of 500 feet. One resident was particularly concerned by the bar’s proximity to Arthur’s Funeral Home.
Another neighbor shared concerns about the uber-popular Taqueria Ramirez, charging that the taqueria had not been a good neighbor. They complained that the street was overrun with noisy crowds of people and that the taqueria was dumping wastewater directly into the street. Taqueria Ramirez doesn’t have a liquor license, nor are they applying for one, so it was unclear what next steps were necessary to address the issue. A neighbor also claimed that Taqueria Ramirez planned to build an outdoor structure for which they do not have a permit.
Lincoln Restler popped up with some updates. His team will work out of new office pop-up locations around the district. Next, they’ll survey neighbors about the state of dog runs in the district.
This Saturday, Grow NYC will host a free reuse event on Berry Street between N 12th and N 13th Streets. Bring your gently used items for a swap!
Out of 25 SLA applications, the committee approved recommendations on 11 of those, recommending denial on 5 applications. 6 applications are requesting a postponement, 2 were withdrawn, and one did not require any action.
Next, there were motions concerning the transportation committee. One was to support the executive committee’s approval of a play street for South 1st between Berry and Wythe in support of PS 84’s recess program, another was requesting that the Board CB1 draft a letter to the Department of Sanitation for overnight cleaning signage for the south side of Kingsland Ave. The final motion was to send a letter of no objection to NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission for…something about limos? CB1 needs to update its technology, it’s hard to hear what they’re talking about half of the time. The motion passed by one, thanks to a last-minute text-in vote.
Local artist Noa Bornstein’s Peace Gorilla sculpture is going up in Newtown Barge Park, for a year, as part of the temporary arts in the parks program.
There was a discussion about the hours at a park on Lynch. Some complaints were made about unauthorized locking of the park.
Finally, CB1 circled back around to Taqueria Ramirez. The Board attempted to figure out where to fit it into an upcoming agenda.
To check out the meeting for yourself, click here.