Rising hotel concerns


Volume 78 – Number 22 / October 29 – November 4, 2008Rising hotel concernsResidents have been working with the developers of a boutique hotel rising on the site of the former Moondance Diner in Soho to ensure the plan includes noise-reduction precautions for the property’s patio and rooftop space.

The project — a 17-story, 70,000-square-foot hotel with 114 rooms — is currently under construction at the corner of Grand St. and Sixth Ave., with the intention of securing three liquor licenses for the space’s ground-floor, deck and rooftop operations.

Residents and members of the Soho Alliance met with representatives from developer Brack Capital Real Estate last month to discuss concerns over noise, especially as they relate to any open-air portions of the on-site restaurants/bars.

The residents mostly took issue with hotel’s outdoor deck and roof areas, requesting that the developer enclose the rooftop and implement mandatory closing times of 11 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on weekends.

“That way you could have your rooftop open all year long,” said Alliance Director Sean Sweeney.

The developer is currently trying to negotiate to keep the rooftop area open, and also wants closing times an hour later than suggested by the community.

“I can tell you right now, we’re not ever going to give them that,” Sweeney offered, which should make for a spirited discussion between the two parties at their next meeting on Nov. 19. Other Downtown communities have successfully lobbied for even earlier closing times at similar hotel bars, getting operators to agree to closing times as early as 8 p.m. and 9 p.m.

Warren Pesetsky, counsel to the developers for their liquor license applications, said that community relations will be central moving forward.

“You can’t live in atmosphere where everyone around you hates you,” he said.

THE SOHO ALLIANCEPO BOX 429 PRINCE STREET STATIONNEW YORK NY 10012