Open Streets

The Crime Zone that is Hell Square [OP-ED]

Last modified April 19, 2022 at 6:41 am

The following editorial was written by Diem Boyd, founder of the LES Dwellers block association. Hell Square pre-pandemic was unlivable, but now, “post-Covid,” it’s untenable and downright dangerous. The decline of quality-of-life and related public safety issues on the Lower East from saturation of the nightlife-driven economy is widely known. In this pandemic setting, it’s […]

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Judge Blocks City’s Effort to Make Open Restaurants Program Permanent

Posted March 25, 2022 at 5:01 am

The path to permanence for the city’s outdoor dining ambitions has been dealt a blow, thanks to a court ruling earlier this week. The Supreme Court of the State of New York, with Judge Frank Nervo presiding, ruled in favor of 22 New Yorkers who filed suit last fall. The claimants argued that the negative […]

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City Council’s Piecemeal Approach to Permanent Outdoor Dining

Last modified February 25, 2022 at 6:27 am

Yesterday’s Yea vote brings the city one big step closer to as-of-right outdoor seating in front of restaurants and bars, yet it’s still piecemealing the permanent plan into effect. The passage of a bill to remove zoning restrictions on sidewalk and roadway cafes by City Council came as no surprise since the subcommittee on Zoning […]

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City Council, Vote No on the Open Restaurants Text Amendments! [OP-ED]

Last modified February 24, 2022 at 8:08 am

The following editorial was written by Diem Boyd, president of the Lower East Side Dwellers block association. There is Better Way for Our Public Streets Than Getting In Bed With the NYC Hospitality Alliance. “We have been hoodwinked, bamboozled, led astray, run amuck, and flat out deceived.” The fight in the street is not about […]

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Judge Denies City’s Attempt to Toss Street Shed Lawsuit

Posted February 9, 2022 at 5:02 am

The community-led lawsuit to block the Open Restaurant program – and its street sheds – from becoming permanent can proceed, a judge determined yesterday. Indeed, Judge Frank Nervo of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, tossed the motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Stating that the city’s argument was “inappropriate,” refusing to dismiss […]

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Firefighters Union President Warns of Dining Shed Dangers

Posted February 8, 2022 at 5:08 am

Ahead of a controversial City Council hearing later this morning, the President of the Uniformed Firefighters Association of Greater New York joined the chorus of opposition to the Open Restaurants street sheds, stating that “Lives Are in Danger.” Media advisory from the mailbag: The haphazard way the structures went up, with no attention to the […]

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Potential for Permanent Crisis as Protests Continue over Open Restaurants

Last modified February 7, 2022 at 9:52 am

Despite the bitter cold this past Saturday, the “Chuck The Sheds” protest had a larger than expected turnout. Not to mention, their effort is gaining traction with some elected officials and local media. Almost a hundred protesters waving signs and chanting “chuck the sheds,” marched from Father Demo Square in the Village to Washington Square […]

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Pianos Introduces Coat Check as Part of its Gargantuan Shed on Ludlow Street

Posted January 11, 2022 at 5:02 am

Pianos is upping its sidewalk hogging game with the introduction of a dedicated coat check section. Indeed, within the last few days, the party venue introduced the mandatory locker for its customers, along with accordion security gates. The additions further diversify an outdoor annex that is essentially another indoor space. And on a large footprint. […]

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With Open Restaurants on its Way to Permanence, Music Heads Indoors

Posted November 9, 2021 at 5:03 am

What follows is a checkup of the downtown music scene with Everynight Charley Crespo, prolific Editor of The Manhattan Beat. Here is the latest entry. The city’s Open Restaurants program has decreased in importance as a showcase for live music. A year ago, outdoor dining establishments and busking were the only ways musicians could play […]

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The LES and Chinatown Grapple with Nightlife Fallout Amidst Open Restaurants

Last modified November 4, 2021 at 7:13 pm

The following guest post was written by Candace Pedraza, a graduate student in the Newmark School of Journalism. The concept of Open Streets is a simple one: use of public space normally unavailable for restaurants and communities is allowed, ensuring socially distanced patronage of local businesses and the safe rekindling of neighborhood connections. The initiative […]

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