A Banker Street nightclub that some have likened to a mini “Sodom and Gomorrah,” should not be allowed to expand its repertoire to include dance parties, a community board panel ruled last night.
After hearing from about a dozen neighbors of Studio B — who called the nightspot noisy, dirty, overcrowded and the host of illegal parties and spontaneous “Girls Gone Wild”-style nudity — Community Board 1’s Public Safety Committee voted 2–1 against the owners’ bid for a city cabaret license that would allow dancing.
“The club broke so many rules, it’s simply disgusting,” said Committee Chairman Mieszko Kalita, before casting the deciding vote.
In the vocal meeting, Greenpointers cited Department of Buildings violations indicating that the club built a new roof deck — as well as an apartment — on its second floor without permission.
One opponent even pulled out photos that she said depicted women flashing their breasts on the Studio B dance floor.
Only three people spoke in favor of Studio B, arguing that the venue, which is between Calyer Street and Meserole Avenue, isn’t noisy and that it has “put Greenpoint on the map.”
Ken Fisher — Studio B’s lawyer and a well-connected former Councilman — came to the meeting ready to compromise, reading off a list of six concessions the club will make to ingratiate itself with the community, including better soundproof on its deck, permanent signage urging club-goers to keep quiet when outside; a second set of double doors at its entrance to muffle noise, a roped-off smoking pen on the sidewalk in front of the club to keep patrons from wandering onto the nearby residential blocks, better trash cleanup and a security patrol.
Even after the panel was unswayed, Fisher guaranteed that Studio B would make good on the promised concessions.
In the end, though, he said he resented some of the claims about the club.
“There were a lot of things that were inaccurate, exaggerated, or irrelevant,” he said. “I was shocked that people in the neighborhood would complain about someone lifting their shirt up. They made it sound like Sodom and Gomorrah.”
The application for a cabaret license now moves to a Community Board 1 Executive Committee vote on Aug. 6 at 6:30 pm at the CB1 offices (435 Graham Ave. at Frost Street). Call (718) 389-0009 for information.
©2008 Community News Group
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