The Word On The Street: A Special Kind Of Love

From Banker Street.

From The New York Shitty Inbox: What’s Up At 259 Banker Street?

August 17, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

I have received a number of inquiries regarding this property. Follows are a few so you, gentle readers, can get the gist:

Hey Heather,

If you get a chance, take a look at the current partial stop work order on 259 Banker.  I was out of town, and am not sure entirely what happened but my upstairs neighbor has been on them like a rabid dog in the past couple of weeks.

She also told me they filed for, and were granted, a cabaret license for their “artist’s studio” but I didn’t have time to find any verification of that myself. She said she was able to find via the paper trail that they have spent over $200,000 on renovations that sound suspiciously like the renovations you’d make to a nightclub.

Maybe the artist living there is only doing so temporarily and was actually planning all along to make it back into a (legal) club? It sounds very, very familiar to me, although this time, they might actually have all the permits in place….

…a stop work order has been issued on this property but there are still doing work I believe they are making this a club again it is zoned industrial only no living

…Just some info a stop work order was issued at this same address recently yet work continues with no care for neighbors in the area or there safety.  This is a indutrial zone area we do not want another studio b it seems thats what is going to happen here

Here’s the deal…

Inasmuch as I can ascertain 259 Banker Street has been issued two permits. One is for a curb cut (Yes, this exciting stuff!). The other, as seen above, is for changing the occupancy of the second floor to an “eating and drinking establishment” and joining it with the first floor. To my knowledge neither a liquor license nor a cabaret license has been applied for. NOTE: both of the previous have to undergo a hearing via the Public Safety Committee of our local community board. Thus far I have seen no mention of 259 Banker Street on their agenda (which can be found online at Community Board 1’s web site). This does not mean the owner of this property does not plan to convert this space into some facsimile of its predecessor, Studio B, it simply means either he/she has not filed the paperwork yet or it has not matriculated through the system. The previous having been written, if/when I see this property on their docket I will post all the details on this site. As for the Stop Work Order…

Make that Partial Stop Work Order.

This was issued for debris falling into an adjacent property. As you can see this has been partially rescinded so the construction company can (ostensibly) erect some kind of scaffolding/protection for its afflicted neighbor. This may or may not be happening because…

another complaint has been filed for ongoing construction despite a Stop Work Order. As you can see, no construction activity was noted.

This is all I know (and probably can be known) at this time. For the time being here’s my advice for the folks who have contacted me (or anyone in a similar such situation):

  1. Email ALL complaints to our/your local community board. Be sure to include any all complaint numbers and general description of what happened/is happening. The email address for Community Board 1 is: bk01@cb.nyc.gov
  2. Watch the agendas for the Public Safety Committee. Any and all liquor license and cabaret license applications (the latter, I will note, are very rare) will find their way there before being issued.

I hope this has been helpful— or at least informative!

UPDATE, August 18, 2011: I have been contacted by the person residing at 259 Banker! We are in going to meet next week so he can tell me what’s going on!

Miss Heather

 

 

 

Spotted At 259 Banker Street: Activity

July 11, 2011 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

This seems eerily familiar. Hmm…

Miss Heather

New York Shitty Street Seating Du Jour: Banker Street

Taken June 15, 2010.

Miss Heather

TODAY: Everything Goes At Studio B!

May 19, 2010 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

This fitting end to our local institution comes from the King of Cabbies. He writes:

Saw an auction ad on the back of yesterday’s Times’ Business section, for this Wednesday at 2:00 PM, that I thought might interest you. It is the equipment and effects of the late, unlamented Studio B, ready to be carted away from the belly of the beast itself!

I for one like how Studio B is mentioned not once, but twice, as being “well known”. That it was— albeit probably not in the way the manner the auctioneer intended. You can get the full rundown of what’s for sale by clicking here.

Studio B Auction c/o Michael Amodeo
May 19, 2010 “Inspection Time” starts at 1:00 p.m., bidding at 2:00 p.m.
259 Banker Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222

Happy hunting!

Miss Heather

P.S.: I have no idea what “Onwars” are, but a $100,000.00 “retractable roof”?!? That’s downright handy!

Greenpoint Photo Du Jour: Mixed Signals

September 7, 2009 ·
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic 

259banker

From Banker Street.

Miss Heather

New York Shitty PSA: Tomorrow

May 11, 2009 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic 

clubexitandstudiob

Those of you who have grown weary of the above two establishments and the nuisance they have posed to our community mark your calendars. Tomorrow is the day you have been waiting for! The following screencap is an excerpt of the eating and drinking establishments whose liquor licenses are up for renewal.

liquorliclist

As you will notice two of Greenpoint’s more, how should I say, NOTORIOUS venues are on this list. This means at tomorrow night’s Community Board One meeting you will, at long last, have an opportunity to let your feelings be known about the manifold contributions these establishments have made to our community’s quality of life:

  • noise
  • litter
  • traffic congestion and lest we forget…

168greenpointavenuerev

  • bullets

Community Board 1 Meeting
May 12, 2009; 6:30 p.m.
211 Ainslie Street
Brooklyn, New York 11211

Be advised that in order to speak you MUST sign in by or before 6:15 p.m.

Miss Heather

A Red Herring In Greenpoint

February 24, 2009 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic 

shenanigansalgulsiento

One of the more compelling questions raised at last week’s meeting of the 94th Precinct Community Council was why Franklin Street currently has seven drinking establishments with an eighth one forthcoming. In other words, the citizens present wanted to know why are so many drinking establishments have been sanctioned to inhabit such a small area. When queried, D.I. Fulton did not have answer— not should he; he is a police officer, not an expert on liquor licensing. The following email from Phil DePaolo, however, might shed some light on this phenomenon:

I just can’t help felling extreme sadness after watching these videos from the above link about the problem with quality of life issues in Greenpoint and Williamsburg.

During the rezoning I spoke to many residents of Hell’s Kitchen and the Lower East Side who were having many of the problems we face today. I was warned that this would happen to us. But to the City, our local council members and some community groups infrastructure and “quality of life issues” I felt were very important were considered non issues and my concerns fell on deaf ears.

Now we see how bars have transformed our community. Small businesses that served local residents have been forced out of their storefronts unable to meet high commercial rents that landlords know bars can afford. And since new bars often attract their clientele from outside the neighborhood, there is no local market cap on their number or viability. New bars attract non-local patrons, those patrons attract more outsiders and more new bars pop up to meet the  boundless demand as the entire neighborhood becomes a scene, a lively scene, but also noisy, congested and sometimes dangerous to our community.

Neighborhoods thrive on responsible development and bars are a useful part of that development. But the bar scene has gotten out of hand. It is forcing on us an unbalanced, non-local and precarious economic base that compromises the quality of life for residents and depreciates the business value of current bars. Our neighborhood ­ residents and businesses and bar owners alike ­needs a cap on the number of bars per block. I proposed this during the rezoning.

The State Liquor Authority has loosened its interpretation of how many bars are allowed by right within a 500 foot radius.  It used to be that opening a bar within 500 feet of any 3 full liquor licenses required a special hearing at the SLA, consultation with the local community board and evidence of public benefit. The new interpretation will allow many more bars to slip in without that special hearing, consultation or evidence.

The new interpretation of the SLA’s 500 foot rule is that there must be 3 or more licenses of the same class. However, community boards do not have information regarding the classes of existing licenses to be able to make informed decisions.

The State Liquor Authority awards liquor licenses to bars in New York City without regard for local economic diversity or residential quality of life. These local concerns should lie within the purview of local governance, not an unaccountable state authority. To return local concerns to local governance, The New York Community Council will ask every City Council candidate to take a clear stand ­in writing, ­on developing new City Council zoning laws to restrict the proliferation of bars in our community, promote economic diversity and preserve the quality of residential life.

The bar problem may not seem as deep an issue as affordable housing or quality education, but it is an issue that affects residents personally and immediately, the kind of issue that brings residents to the voting booth.

Our neighborhood, long prized for its diversity of peoples, cultures and arts, has many challenges: rampant poverty, homelessness, violence and drugs, rampant gentrification, displacement of long term residents and businesses and now a bar scene that is out of control. Isn’t it time we took in hand the future of our neighborhood? We must ask City Council candidates, where do you stand on zoning limits for new bars?

So there have you. We, as citizens, have been effectively by-passed from having any voice regarding our own community’s future. As a result large venues/tourist attractions like Studio B (which, per Gothamist will be coming back with a vengeance. Soon.) and The Production Lounge (backed by lobbyists and/or unheard of amounts of money) are reshaping our community in a manner which best suits their interests, namely: making it a playground for others. When these “tourists” leave we are the ones who have to live with the consequences of their actions be it garbage, noise, traffic, a smashed window, posting an apology for said broken window, or having bullets fired outside (or inside) your home.

Contrary to what good ol’ Joe alleges (because has no other proverbial leg to stand on) this is not a race issue: it is a quality of life issue. An issue that has arisen time and time again in this, my community when nightclubs have operated with total disregard to the well-being of their neighbors. A neighborhood which I care very much about: Greenpoint.

Those of you who are amenable to having 11222 become another 11211 (or are simply apathetic) should ignore the rest of this post. Those of you who are interested taking our neighborhood back (or at least having your voice heard) can raise holy (but polite and non-threatening, please) hell with your elected officials. Here’s a few to kick things off:

State Assemblyman Joseph Lentol
619 Lorimer Street
Brooklyn, NY 11211
(718) 383 – 7474
lentolj (at) assembly (dot) state (dot) ny (dot) ny (dot) us

Councilman David Yassky
114 Court Street
Brooklyn, New York 11201
(718) 875 – 5200
yassky (at) council (dot) nyc (dot) ny (dot) us

Community Board 1
435 Graham Avenue
Brooklyn , New York, 11211
(718) 389 – 0009
Fax: (718) 389 – 0098
Email: bk01 (at) cb (dot) nyc (dot) gov

And last— but hardly least— you can complain to the New York State Liquor Authority. The people who have in large part created this problem in the first place.

Miss Heather

Photo Credit: Algul Siento

Goodbye Jack O’Neill’s, Hello Shayz Lounge

January 12, 2009 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic 

jackieo

As predicted Jack O’Neill’s has changed hands and as of last Saturday it has closed its doors. You can check out its newest incarnation January 17th when it reopens as the Shayz Lounge.

shayz

I suspect I speak for many when I say I hope the new owners are going to keep the Irish pub theme and not attempt to transform this establishment into something unduly “hip”. Given the name they have selected I am not terribly optimistic, but I suppose we all will just have to wait and see.

Shayz Lounge
130 Franklin Street
Brooklyn, New York 11222
OPENING DATE: January 17, 2008

Miss Heather

P.S.: Speaking of “hip” those would-be entrepreneurs among you who happen to have some a lot of extra change laying around might be interested to know 259 Banker Street has officially hit the market.

forrent

Night Of The Living (Brain) Dead: The Gift

December 28, 2008 ·
Filed under: Asshole, Greenpoint Magic 

I used to be a serious gore hound. I attribute this to my mother’s habit of playing racketball when I was a wee little one. When she went to the health club to clobber some balls I was entrusted to the care of the club’s owners. I was given all the Tab I could drink and luxuriated on the shag rug in their office while watching horror movies. LOTS of horror movies.

That said, there is some snuffy stuff I simply cannot bear to watch anymore. Zombie movies mostly. This came to pass after I wrote a college term paper about George Romero’s “Dead” trilogy, primarily Dawn Of The Dead. At 21 (or was it 22?) years of age I finally figured out what the previous movie was really about. I have a healthy appreciation for Mr. Romero’s social commentary but the fact of the matter is it hits too close to home. My home: Greenpoint.

After a wonderful dinner last night with some very charming, intelligent and above all witty cat-loving (T)expats in DUMBO I encountered the above slew of idiots as I exited the Greenpoint Avenue stop of the G. Instead of running away I stood my ground and filmed them. Amusingly enough they didn’t seem to notice me or they (in their infinite naval-gazing, search for Bedford Avenue* or intoxication) didn’t care.

One chap did a bump of coke, another while too blotto to walk— even with a cane— somehow managed to contact someone on his i-Phone and write a memo to himself via the condensation on a parked B61 bus. Afterward most ambled over to McDonalds (one of the few restaurants open late hereabouts— god have mercy on the underpaid souls who had to serve them because they won’t) to get some kibble before going home. Where did these hipster zombies come from you ask? Studio B, in all likelihood.

Those of you who beg to differ with my hipster/zombie analogy please (re)view the Dawn of The Dead Trailer and my YouTube footage and explain the difference via comments. If you choose to take the mundane, yet prevalent Internet stand of “this is the city what do expect” and/or the “you’re just old/ugly/fat/under-fucked” argument I humbly request that you post an additional essay about where you plan to be in ten years including a step-by-step plan as to how you are going to get there.

Miss Heather

*One chick shouted (to no one in particular):

Can we get to Bedford Avenue on the G?

If I was a truly evil human being I would have given her the following advice:

Yes, take the G to Bedford-Nostrand.

But I’m not and I didn’t.

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