From The New York Shitty Inbox: Trouble At The House Of Vans?
Filed under: 11211, 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, Williamsburg, Williamsburg Brooklyn
This week, dear readers, I have the honor of passing along a rather dubious Greenpoint first. Plenty of noise and quality of life complaints find their way to my inbox, to be certain— but regarding an establishment that is not technically open to the public yet? Well, this has indeed come to pass and the honoree of the hour is House of Vans. Anonymous writes:
As you probably remember, Vans (the skateboarding shoe company) took over that old Odwalla warehouse on Franklin next to Pop’s Popular Clothing at 25 Franklin. They had their grand opening Saturday night, and it was a mess. People parked illegally, people doubleparked, people parking their cars in the middle of the street, tons of honking as cabs & car services attempted to drop people off.
It was also very loud. I appreciate that there is no residential on any side of them, but the space clearly has no kind of insulation or soundproofing. We could hear the bass in our living room with the windows closed.
The biggest issue was kids who were congregating on the street corners near us afterward. But there’s nothing they can really do about that and I don’t expect them to, but a “Please respect our neighbors as you make your way home” wouldn’t kill them.
What I’d like to see from Vans for future large events of this nature:
–Have a security guard out front directing traffic and dealing with cabs and pickups/dropoffs. Everyone seemed to arrive in a cab or car service. It’s not that far away from public transportation and it was a nice night. And these were skaters?!
–Check the volume down the block in the residential area; if it’s too loud, drop it to 11 please
I have no objections to this being a skatepark. In fact, I think it’s a great reuse of a building. I don’t even have objections for it being used for the occasional live event. I would, however, like to know how many of these large loud parties they plan on holding each year. The Vans spokesperson described it as “a hub for doing grassroots skate events”* but it didn’t look that grassroots to me on Saturday night.
Funnily enough I cannot find anything about 25 Franklin St. on DOB BIS. Says it is not a valid address. Pshark.com doesn’t have it either. Curious about permits. You understand.
I for one am curious as to what the FDNY would have to say about this. Obviously if this warehouse is going to be repurposed as a public venue it will have to be complaint with fire code. If anyone reading this has an expertise in this respect I would love to hear from you be it via comments or email at: missheather (at) thatgreenpointblog (dot) com. In addition, I would think a Place of Assembly permit may be in or order— or at the very least an amended Certificate of Occupancy. Finally (and in closing)— taking into consideration what my tipster observed last Saturday in regards to traffic, double parking, etc. and the fact Kent Avenue has less traffic capacity— I have to wonder how these events are going to impact the surrounding residential community in terms of vehicular congestion. In my opinion the outlook isn’t very good.
UPDATE, 10/21/10 3:36 p.m.: I have received an email from a very nice chap from Vans. You can look forward to a follow-up post (about this missive) in the near future!
*E.g.; (according this site)
- 25,000 square feet; 15,000 indoors and 10,000 sq. ft outdoor enclosed patio and skate plaza
- raised indoor flowing concrete bowl with numerous contours, shapes, banks & transitions
- outdoor skate plaza with steps and railings
- permanent, removable professional stage, lighting and sound system
- performer “green room”
- installed custom art by Mike Giant
- will serve as Vans’ East Coast marketing headquarters with two full time employees at launch
- home to Vans’ East Coast touring RV