Did you know that the restaurants on Vernon Boulevard cannot serve alcohol in their backyards? There’s been a long-running feud between a select few residents who live on Vernon and several restaurants – some no longer with us – over the years.
The basic argument has come down to an oppressed minority who had been living peaceably only to have some upstarts change their lifestyle quite significantly versus ‘they should have known better when choosing to live on a commercial street’ as posited by the restaurant owners (and probably a few landlords1 ). Like most arguments, there’s a little merit to each side.
Mehh, a lot of time has passed since then, the nation elected an African-American as president – twice, and Donald Trump too, no-no just kidding. And marijuana was legalized and unicorns ran free in NYC. Really! And there’s been a lot of turnover in LIC too, and major changes to the composition of the neighborhood.
And then came the coronavirus. And the need for increased social distancing.
So in order to alleviate the above, the city is proposing to expand the outdoor seating at local restaurants – a vital and extremely hard-hit sector of NYC. The recommendations include more sidewalk seating and where applicable the closing of streets for even more space.
Unfortunately neither of those options work logistically for Vernon Boulevard. The thoroughfare is too central to close off to vehicular traffic, and while the sidewalks could accommodate a little outdoor seating, it could only be a thin band in order to have enough passageway during the time of social distancing.
Moreover, when done up right, backyard dining can be beautiful oases in the crowded city, as well as an offset in these dire times for those beleaguered restaurateurs who have access to them.
The catalyst for change is here, it’s time to remove this archaic zoning carve-out exclusive to Hunters Point.
//Queens Paideia School To Hold Virtual Summer Camp – sleepaway camp cancelled for your kids? Feel unsure about sending them to day camp? The Queens Paideia School located in Court Square will be holding a virtual summer camp for kids in grades K-6 this summer. It will be guided by QPS’ formidable instructors, Sage Music School staff, and other educators and artists in Queens. For more info click here.
NYC Politicians Call For Outdoor Seating On Sidewalks, Streets, And Parking Spots – while you’re at it, please keep the open-containers allowance too
New Tactics On The Noise Front? An Ear For An Ear – Woodbines predecessor Lounge 47 was the initial foray way back in 2006
Lounge 47 Menu Partly Devised By Julie/Julia Writer – “Min and I became friends at the Murray Park dog run”
Brooks Brothers To Close LIC Factory & Lay Off 136 Employees – no longer will any of their products be Made In The USA
AOC & Primary Opponent Trade Testy Jabs In Debate – not quite LIC, but nearby and getting ugly
Woman Shot In Head While Sitting In Car In Long Island City – meanwhile up in Queensbridge
- whose lease rates would be higher if tenants could fully utilize the backyard [↩]