Welcome to First Word, wherein Eater and its correspondents sit for hours at steamy community board meetings to bring back the first word of new establishments and what they're up to. Your reports from the field always encouraged to firstname.lastname@example.org.
CB3's SLA Licensing Committee and over a dozen applicants and their supporters (and detractors) spent four and a half hours in a senior center last night deciding the fate of the nightlife scene in the East Village, LES, Chinatown, and surrounds. We've already heard about the Panya space expansion. Let's get to the rest.
1) A number of residents came to give their overwhelming support for the Upright Citizen's Brigade's plan to open up a theater in the recently closed Two Boots Pioneer Theater on 2nd and A. There were some outstanding zoning issues, but since most everyone agreed the neighborhood could use a theater, the application passed given 10 stipulations regarding the control of traffic going in and out of the building.
2) The owners of Bruno Jamais ended up withdrawing their application for their new space on 179 Ludlow Street due to an outpouring of opposition. The community cited a stop work order for past year, a massive number of rats affecting the area,
and the fact that the restaurant seems to be in foreclosure. Reps from Bruno Jamais write in to let us know that both the stop work order and the foreclosure happened during the construction of the building "way before the Jamais Organization showed interest in leasing some commercial space."
3) Approvals: The E.U. won support for an upgrade, Kuma Inn for a new license separate from the one they've apparently been sharing with a restaurant downstairs, Winebar for a renewal as long as they increase soundproofing, Kaleidoscope as long as they never use their backyard, and Madras Cafe (72 Second Ave.), Ken's Asian Taste (40 Bowery), Saigon NYC (85 Orchard), and Thai Bodhi Tree (in the old Taco Bell Space on 3rd Ave.) for a new licenses.
4) Denials: A new restaurant at 171 Avenue A was denied due to oversaturation at "a lack of a contribution to the neighborhood." Maradonna at 118 Allen Street was rejected for an upgrade due to an oversaturation of area, previous complaints, an incomplete application, and lack of outreach. Sunshine 27 and Noodle King, two restaurants in Chinatown were denied for incomplete applications and shady behavior trying to get around the CB.
— Reporting by Bailly Roesch
· First Word: Panya Space to Expand into Around the Clock [~E~]