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Slopers feel very unlucky about Lou’s

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Park Slope residents are fighting a sports bar they say will turn a quiet residential street into a booming hub for drunks.

A fiery throng of neighbors stormed a Community Board 6 meeting on Monday to protest the proposed Lucky Lou’s Bar and Grill, which would skirt residential zoning restrictions to open on Sixth Avenue and Seventh Street, amid a cluster of public institutions.

Owner Luis Cordero — who initially sought to sling hard liquor until 4 am — has since changed his plan, saying the establishment will serve “four-star food” and cater to families.

“It’s more of a restaurant than a bar,” he said. “I’m on top of things.”

But dozens of neighbors — church pastors, parents and lawyers among them — are still not convinced, saying his plan would “clash” with surrounding schools, public libraries and churches.

“This is a place to get drunk while eating chicken wings,” said Linda Steinman, a lawyer who lives nearby. “A bar here would be a real aberration and a lot of lives would be affected.”

Sixth Avenue has remained a quiet and insular street for years — despite its position between the Park Slope’s two bustling avenues — and residents want to keep it that way.

“This area is a diamond for our community; it’s a treasure,” said parent Charles McMellon. “Do we want our kids to see this when they come out of day care?”

Lucky Lou’s — which already boasts an illuminated sign featuring a horseshoe letter “U” — is within two blocks of PS 39, Beanspouts Nursery School, the library branch at Ninth Street and two churches.

It’s also two blocks from the popular Park Slope Ale House, which serves beer, wine and any cocktail imaginable.

If Lucky Lou’s opens, it would be one of only three restaurants in a 19-block stretch of Sixth Avenue between Flatbush Avenue and Ninth Street.

Cordero, who owns the building, is grandfathered in under the building’s original commercial zoning, which also applied to the former grocery store and the Kohzee Cafe, which operated in the same space.

Even so, some neighbors turned the public meeting into what felt more like “Matlock” trial, calling into question Cordero’s character — and citing thousands of dollars worth of unpaid city fines.

Indeed, the city has slapped Cordero with at least 16 violations — including bad plumbing, garbage violations and improper signage — in the past three years.

“His behavior has shown a lack of concern for neighbors,” said John Florio, who lives nearby. “We don’t see why that would change.”

But Cordero — who said he has lived in the neighborhood 40 years — said he is being misunderstood, blaming some problems on merchants who operated businesses inside buildings that he owns.

“I’m taking care of it,” he said.

He also hired a lawyer who agreed to a “trial period” during which the bar would close at midnight and only serve beer and wine.

That wasn’t good enough for some neighbors, who argued the bar’s physical distance from a church also causes problems for the recovering alcoholics who attend meetings at nearby churches. What’s more, it must legally be over 200 feet from a church — and it is either 201 feet or 198 feet, depending on who is doing the measuring.

“We see what alcohol does to individuals and families,” said Pastor Ainsworth Joseph of Kingsboro Temple of Seventh-day Adventist church. “Now it’s dividing this community.”

Community Board 6 will take up the issue next month. The meeting has not yet been scheduled.

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Reader Feedback

Dave from PS says:
Cordero should ignore these nuts - they'll never agree to any compromise or trial period because they are against everything and anything.
Sept. 28, 2011, 9:50 am
Duncan Osborne from Park Slope says:
Actually Dave, us "nuts" want Mr. Cordero to have a successful business in that location. What we oppose are living with drunks yelling, fighting, and smoking, delivery trucks idling, more cigarette butts and trash on our streets, and all of the other ills that bars inevitably bring to a neighborhood.

If Mr. Cordero were to propose putting an ice cream shop, a family friendly cafe, or a similar business in that location, all of us would be supportive.
Sept. 28, 2011, 10:34 am
dierdre from ps says:
Agree with Dave. Those people are totally nuts. Especially that dude Charles McMellon's statment:

“Do we want our kids to see this when they come out of day care?”

What an asinine statement. Do you want your kids to see WHAT? a bar? People having a cocktail? Do you put a bandana on your kids head when you walk to 5th or 7th Avenue where there are a 100 bars! He and that Steinman woman sound like the typical Park Slope nutjob. I agree Cordero should do as he pleases because these people don't even know how to be rational. If your kid sees a person having a drink and they can't handle it, they are in for a LONG ROUGH LIFE.
Sept. 28, 2011, 10:38 am
Landon from ParkSlope says:
Duncan,

This is a capitalist society and you don't dictate who opens what. If you'd like an ice cream shop, go open one. This man can do what he pleases and doesn't need to cater to the freaks like you. If he's within the law, I hope he DOES open a bar because I live near here and would love one. Just because you and a handful of your overprotective whackjob friends don't like it doesn't mean some of us in the neighborhood would welcome this. Just because you have kids doesn't mean you OWN the neighborhood. You have your playpens, you have your ice cream shops, now let the 70% of the neighborhood who DON'T have kids, have some fun too.
Sept. 28, 2011, 10:41 am
lisa from southslope says:
“Do we want our kids to see this when they come out of day care?”

Anyone who can say that with a straight face while living in New York City, the largest city in the United States needs to run so fast for the suburbs that your head spins. Your little precious is going to see so much worse than a bar, honey. I think what these people need more than a slap from Cordero are some parenting lessons and a one way ticket to Westchester where the only bar you'll see is at the MALL!
Sept. 28, 2011, 10:46 am
Chuck from 7th Street, PS says:
So anybody who disagrees with you is a nut? Personal attacks do nothing but harden the lines and lessen your arguments. You want to drink? Go to the Fifth or Seventh Avenue bars. Plenty of booze there along with the noise, cigarette butts, and late-night drunks urinating on the trees.
Sept. 28, 2011, 11:13 am
Lucas from PS says:
You don't dictate what this gentleman does with his LEGAL commercial space, Chuck. If he wants to open a bar and it's within the law, he can open a bar. Doesn't men you need to like it, but if you cared so much you wouldn't have moved near a place which has been residential for decades.

Your incredibly overly dramatic talk of noise, cig butts and urinating does nothing to help your point other than make you look like even more of a nut than you already are.

Sounds like you could use a hobby anyway. Maybe you can go sweep up the butts every morning and it'll give you something to do other than to complain about everything under the sun.
Sept. 28, 2011, 11:20 am
Zephy from Park Slope says:
I don't have kids, but I'm against opening this bar too. I'm mostly concerned about noise. There are plenty of bars nearby; no one who wants a bar is suffering from inability to find one.

But quiet is precious in NYC, and this is a rare quiet neighborhood. I don't have AC and I sleep with the windows open all summer long. The neighborhood is mostly quiet. Occasionally we do get a noisy bunch of people (walking up from a bar on 5th Avenue?), but it is very occasional. Sometimes I work on Saturdays and have to go to bed early on Friday. I really don't want a bar right outside my window with people partying late when I have to work the next day.

6th Avenue is zoned residential, that's why it's quiet. It's only through a legal fluke that Mr. Cordero can legally open a business on that corner. He should respect the wishes of the neighborhood on this one and have a quiet business that closes early (like a restaurant, grocery store, ice cream place for kids . . .). Bars are a dime a dozen around here, but silence is golden.

@PropJoe from Bushwick: plenty of "negroes" at the 7th Day Adventist Church are against the bar too. I don't think this is a racial issue at all; interesting that you brought it up. What's your beef, man?
Sept. 28, 2011, 11:48 am
Joe from 7th St in Park Slope says:
As a new potential neighbor to this bar, and someone who actually regularly goes to and enjoys bars, I think this is a HORRIBLE IDEA to open a bar on this residential / quiet location on 6th Ave.

The "4 star food for families" the owner now says he wants to open is total BS, as originally he was pushing for a BAR that stays open until 4am. The food is obviously an after thought to try to make things fly.

If this place was a cafe that served decent food (NOT ALCOHOL), I would gladly give them a lot of business, and encourage my friends and neighbors to do the same.

As a new BAR on 6th Ave, I will do everything in my power to prevent this bar from opening, and if it does open, do everything possible to prevent it from succeeding.
Sept. 28, 2011, 12:03 pm
edgar from parkslope says:
It doesn't matter what it is, it will be closed in 6 months like every other business in that location.

If they were SMART, they'd put in a small grocery market there which is about the only thing that would be successful. Somewhere to pick up milk and eggs without walking to 5th or 7th. The business owner here is known to be a bad one, and the place should be closed within a year, tops. You can tell from the website that it's a pretty low class operation.
Sept. 28, 2011, 12:13 pm
Peter from Park Slope says:


Wrong place for a sports bar.
We have 7th Ave , 4th and Fifth,
for noisy commercial activity.
This is a RESIDENTIAL area.

Sept. 28, 2011, 1:05 pm
Biff Champion from Brooklyn Heights says:
Classy as always, PropJoe.
Sept. 28, 2011, 5:52 pm
anonymous from park slope says:
Doubt it'll be much of a magnet for late night excitement, so this all seems like a typical Park Slope storm in a teacup. Cordero has been around here longer than most of the uptight complainers - let him do what he wants with his place. More grocery stores would be nice, but the Fresh Direct/Union Market/Food Co-op loving artisanal-seeking latte sipping high income parents drove most of these places out of business years ago. The grocery store on 10th is the only one left nearby - show it some love.
Sept. 28, 2011, 8:19 pm
Liz from SouthSlope says:
anonymous,

have you ever been to park slope? the only grocery store left is on 10th street? huh?

there is the c town on 9th street, there is a union market on 7th avenue and 13th street, an incredible korean owned market called the bad wife on 7th and 11th, there is the newly renovated market on 5th avenue and 7th street and there is a brand new key food gourmet market opening on 5th avenue and 12th street. this doesn't include any of the 6 bodegas within a 5 block radius. i dare you to find a neighborhood in brooklyn with more grocery stores. sounds like you're typing from the basement of your granny's basement in queens.
Sept. 28, 2011, 9:13 pm
Alex from Ps says:
4 star food, a ——ing joke. You —— have no idea what 4 star food is. ——ing clown
Sept. 28, 2011, 10:38 pm
Monty from 6th ave in Park Slope says:
What is this fuzz about the Bar and Mr. Cordero? This gentleman has been there for 40 years. He tried to rent to some businesses - OK a Tibetan design store was not the best idea (but quite) - then a diner - OK there was a number of volations ... but the past is the past! A nice bar with sport TVs and a large illuminate sign (oups - in place but not yet approved by the city - another violation?) with actually a Harley Davidson next to it (own by Mr. Cordero)... this is going to be a wannaby classy bar. By the way, the Harley at 2:00 AM: something you can remenber for the rest of the night, now we will have the customers too! Last, the law is the law: why sould we have a trial period for a bar that is less than 200 feet from a church? (legal definition of the distance between the two is not 'door to door' but 'gate to gate' and this is less than 200 feet ... so the bar is ILLEGAL from day one. Cheers
Sept. 28, 2011, 11:05 pm
anonymous from park slope says:
Talking about SIXTH Avenue, Liz (Edgar suggested a grocery store at Cordero's place instead of a bar). Thanks for the breakdown, but I was aware of the grocery stores & supermarkets elsewhere in the South Slope.. Granny is dead (RIP) & never lived in Queens. I've lived in the neighborhood for 25 years. The dare is kinda fun though.
Sept. 28, 2011, 11:38 pm
Glenda from 7th Street says:
This article was extremely slanted toward the group which was the loudest which was fine, the writer is entitled to do that in this society. It is also fine that Mr. Cordero do what he wants with his space, which he has owned for over 40 years. He ran a successful business there with his wife & children, rented it out and now wants to again utilize the space again for himself. Fair, I think. There are plenty of other successful spaces along 6th Avenue which serve alcohol. The group did mention at the board meeting there are two bars with full licenses from Flatbush to 9th Street but if they would have taken their survey the other way just a bit they would have found other successful quiet businesses on 6th which serve alcohol, Mr. McMellon brought up schools and other children services (i.e. Library which has been closed for two years with no opening in sight) which would be affected by this, but they did not have a presence at the meeting (even after contacted by him to come speak to their parent boards). Mr. McMellon reflected on his days at 39 when he ran out of school and in his sights was Lou's Deli which he ran to to get candy and play video games. He wants his children to not have in their sights a bar, however, if he did in fact come running out of 39 in 1980 or thereabouts, and would have looked at the other corner (9th as opposed to 7th Street), he would have seen a full-fledged bar which was there for 100 years. But since it was not something that catered to him, he didn't even notice. Which is most likely the case for the children who are being thrown into this debate. The 7th Day Adventist Church (loudest propopent) brought their personal preaching to the meeting - touting the destruction of family due to alcohol...personal and should have stayed that in the confines of their services. The 7th Day community came en masse, however, they do not live in this community (evident from the fact that they all used the church address when signing the sheet at the community board meeting and their petition), so although they would be subjected to seeing people (even families) eating and drinking together, I think they should worry about what happens in their own backyard, not ours. They come, they worship, they leave. They do not contribute to this community and should not have a say. Just my humble, yet quiet opinion.
Sept. 29, 2011, 8:45 am
Pastor Ainswiorth Joseph from 415-21 7th Street says:
While I respect all the comments and people's opinions, let me clarify two things. Firstly, this is not and should not be classified as a racial issue--it is not! We have Park Slope's best interest at heart as a faith community. Contributing to a community goes way deeper than merely establishing an address and sleeping there. The staff at Methodist, for example, may not necessarily live in the community however, I'm sure their contribution is greatly appreciated. Secondly, there are members of our congregation who reside in the Park Slope community and were represented at the meeting also. Those who are really in touch with the community would know that the church has been playing a role and making significant conributions to the Park Slope community. We are committed to continue doing the same.
Sept. 29, 2011, 10:17 am
Glenda from 7th Street says:
As I mentioned earlier, this is a society where you are entitled to your opinion as I am entitled to mine. I don't know where you read this was a racial issue, but not from me. The issue at hand is whether anyone's personal beliefs should be imparted onto a community. I will reiterate that most members of the congregation are not from this neighborhood evidenced by the fact that they all have to drive to attend services here AND used the church address for the sign in sheet at the Community Board meeting and petition. If the congregation were as community minded as they state, they would take public transportation so residents of this community would not be held hostage to their parking spots. We who live here know that if we dare leave on a Saturday, we cannot return because not even an illegal spot will be available to us, thanks to your congregation. So please don't try to make me believe otherwise, I live here!! Just because I'm not a part of your "community" doesn't mean I'm not in touch with this community and shame on your for suggesting otherwise!
The people who work at Methodist - many from this community - are not imparting their beliefs onto others. They are here to provide an invaluable service to this community and receive fair wages for that service. They are not even an issue and don't know why they were brought up.
Sept. 29, 2011, 2:26 pm
Sheila from Former Park Slope Resident says:
Mr. Cordero wants to open an upscale establishment, Lucky Lou's Bar & Grill in the community...That's wonderful!!
Sept. 29, 2011, 3:11 pm
Sheila from Former Park Slope Resident says:
Looking forward to the Grand Opening!!
Sept. 29, 2011, 3:40 pm
Jon from Parkslope says:
Oh Glenda, your rants are exactly why so many people make fun of Park Slope. You need to get a life, a sense of humor and possibly a little something at babeland.

Please find a new hobby besides acting like the neighborhood busybody.
Sept. 29, 2011, 3:44 pm
Debbie from Park Slope says:
I cannot believe what i am reading from all these
post. If Lucky Lou"s want too open up a Bar and GRILL in his own community that is fine with me. I just may stop by with my friends and have the burger with a Blooming Onion . Why doesn't this community focus on the STRIP Bar that is opening up by the New Brooklyn Nets thats what we need too be worrying about have you walked along 5th Ave with all the Bar and Grills there is no problems down there there and a place on 10th street i never see problems there either and they have a Bar.

So just go have a burger and enjoy a night out.
Sept. 29, 2011, 3:46 pm
Eileen from Park Slope says:
Burger and Blooming Onions lol . I will come and join you can't wait for the Grand opening of Lucky Lou's Bar and Grill
Sept. 29, 2011, 3:50 pm
Glenda from 7th Street says:
Jon, do you have a position one way or the other...probably not? I personally collected over 125 signatures of residents who have no opposition to Lou opening his establishment as he wishes. So maybe you should try to get your facts straight before you say anything.
Sept. 29, 2011, 4 pm
Alli on 10th says:
Go Glenda!

The residents near Park Slope Ale House, which has been there for many years seem to co-exist harmonously--So why not at
Lou's ?
Sept. 29, 2011, 4:20 pm
mike from windsor says:
Typical isolated park slope freaks over reaction to a simple bar.
Sept. 29, 2011, 5:22 pm
Lee from parkslope says:
Where is the STRIP BAR OPENING????

I want to go!!!
Sept. 29, 2011, 5:23 pm
Liz from Prospect Heights says:
If by Strip bar you are talking about the place that the nutjob Park Slopers LIED about and said was a strip club, you should walk by the place because it's about the classiest looking place in ALL OF PARK EFFING SLOPE.

Those whackjobs just SAID it was a strip club to get some attention. The place is called Prime 6. It is located at 6th Avenue and Flatbush and it's beautiful. Go walk by it and tell me if you think it's a STRIP CLUB or not. Most Strip clubs don't have a wall of windows to the street, beautiful custom made wooden doors and a bar that looks like it's right out of Boardwalk Empire.
Sept. 29, 2011, 5:42 pm
Within Spitting Distance of LL from PS says:
A smart business / building owner considers the needs of those most affected by their grand plans- otherwise what's happening with Lucky Lous is a no-brainer. Everyone I've spoken to about living near a bar has advised that you should fight it tooth and nail. This building is not a typical commercial space; it is entirely surrounded by residences on all sides. I'm figuring that most of those who are railing about PS uptight wackos won't have to pass drunk folks smoking cigarettes on the way home- you'll have your wings and drinks and wave bye bye as you head home. If you're as bright as you think you are you'd do a little investigating about the building owner. If you did you would see that he has racked up many building violations- some of them quite serious that truly endanger his neighbors. Once you understand that you realize that this is not someone to be trusted. This is not someone at all concerned about his neighbors. Bottom line: Sports bars = drinking, gambling, drugs, etc. If you are familiar with 200 5th, you know exactly what I'm talking about. The difference is 6th Av & 7st is not a commercial strip, so shut your mouths and continue to live like cows & sheep. You're just going to walk on by- those of us who are going to be forced to live with it are going to do what the building owner has done- we're going to exercise our rights to make sure it never opens as a sports bar. It's not personal, it's about quality of life and that is key in life. You have many other options in the neighborhood for wings, drinks and sports. Would it matter to you if your wife/daughter/mother/sister/girlfriend was walking home late at night and within a few feet of their door they had to pass some drunk guys hanging outside a bar? Maybe that's not even on your radar, but I have a brain in my head-it's on mine.
Sept. 29, 2011, 9:25 pm
Monty from 6th ave in Park Slope says:
Mr. Lou wants to open a bar - so why not where it is legal - and not less than 200 feet from a church. By the way Glanda, I am not a member of 7th Day Advantist Church, however you cannot say they do mot participate in the community - they just did this month a very nice block party for ... 7th street ... where you leave. Yes you can have your opinion but at least you should be fair. And Mr. Lou? Never did anythnig for the neighborhood except having a noisy motorbike and late night parties on its roof. Sure a bar will change the man! what a joke.
Sept. 29, 2011, 10:13 pm
Doris from Park Slope / 6th Street says:
Again a bar! For once we had a quite corner. Noe a bar on every corner - 5th ave on 6th ave!
Sept. 29, 2011, 10:48 pm
Thomas from Park Slope says:
Can Mr. LL pay first his city fines? He is such great member of our community. Crap
Sept. 29, 2011, 10:51 pm
jbob from the slope says:
I will personally buy the first round
Sept. 30, 2011, 8:51 am
Jim from ParkSlope says:
I live on this block and I can't WAIT for a bar right here on my corner!!!! my roommates are all excited too!!

I hope I see "within spitting distance" to make sure I blow my cig smoke right in his gross uppity little eye!!
Sept. 30, 2011, 9:55 am
Flip Flop from Park Slope says:
LMAO this is EXACTLY what I needed to entertain myself at work today and a drink @ Lou's would be perfect for this evening....
Living in Park Slope - and I mean a REAL resident, not you people from Connecticut - I love the idea. You would think with all muggings and attacks that are happening in the neighborhood people would be happy with a form on life on desolate 6th Avenue.
Charles McMellon - where are you from? "Do we want our kids to see this when they come out of day care?" This is HILARIOUS. Do you not recall a Pink —— Cat store across the street from P.S. 51? What do you want your kids to see when they come out of daycare? A miserable, dead, boring society? Move back to your roots and out of mine.
Oh - and... can't you have wine at 9am if you go to church?
Jbob - bring your wallet I am a thirsty one!
Sept. 30, 2011, 12:21 pm
Capitailist from USA says:
"those of us who are going to be forced to live with it"

You're not being forced to do anything, fool. Move someplace else. This is akin to saying that your workplace is obligated to serve you and make you happy. It's not. When your job bothers you, you quit and find a new job. When your place of residence is altered to a state beyond your myopic vision of "peaceful and quiet" you have the freedom to get the !@#$% out of the neighborhood. You're not the center of the universe nor is anyone obligated to go out of their way to please you, you NIMBY jerk.

"Would it matter to you if your wife/daughter/mother/sister/girlfriend was walking home late at night and within a few feet of their door they had to pass some drunk guys hanging outside a bar?"

No.

NEXT!
Sept. 30, 2011, 1:55 pm
The ghost Joe Foley from 6th Avenue, PS says:
I think I might come back from the dead. People swearing at each other. Males getting aggressive. People calling each other names. Few speaking the truth. Sad.
Sept. 30, 2011, 5:56 pm
The ghost of Joe Foley from 6th Avenue, PS says:
One more thing. I think only the dead really know Brooklyn. You who threaten others, go slowly. I remember the Bodaga that was on that corner. It sold beer to minors and nickel bags to everyone. Don't think this is going to be some kind of yuppy bar. If it happens, it will be what it has always been.
Sept. 30, 2011, 6:15 pm
Born in Park Slope says:
The bodaga that sold beer to minors and nickel bags was owned and operated by Mike & Jimmie, and was before Louie brought the property. Park Slope is what is it today because of the long tern residents not because of the people who have moved to it and have tried to change it. Those of you who have commented on this sight and don't know who Joe Foley was.... go back to where you came from, and govern that neighborhood for you are not original Park Slopers!!!!
Sept. 30, 2011, 7:28 pm
Born in Park Slope says:
Those long term residents...Remember when there were up to 30 teenager day and night hanging out on that corner all smoking cigarettes? Well I do, and I remember how Louie would chase us from the corner?!
Sept. 30, 2011, 7:34 pm
Born in Park Slope says:
What would these protesters say about that?
Sept. 30, 2011, 7:37 pm
Born in Park Slope says:
If you really want to know how Park Slope was in the 70's & 80's you should go to your Facebook page and join the site. That' how it really was! Now you can't even sit on your stoop and have a beer or a glass of wine without getting a ticket.
Sept. 30, 2011, 7:58 pm
Park Sloper of 35 years from Park Slope says:
I agree with many of the other arguments opposing the presence of a bar that will in no way compare to the establishment on 5th Street, but wanted to also add my own unique perspective. After I moved to Park Slope around 1975, my welcoming committee was a gang that hung out at Louie's bodega and promptly burglarized my building. Mr. Cordero was known to condone a lot of unsavory goings on. Not long after, there was a mysterious fire in his building several hours after all the cars from his indoor garage happened to be moved out - arson was suspected, but could not be proven. So I can speak from experience and say this is not a stand-up guy whom we can trust to run a decent bar.
Oct. 4, 2011, 1:49 am
Luis Cordero from Park Slope says:
How dare you all impune both my judgement and taste! This is a free country and if I want a gay strip club for the Hells Angels then so be it!

It's high time someone brought some class to this f*cking neighborhood before eminent domain knocks all the buildings into the Gowanus canal to make room for a Walmart!

It never ceases to amaze me how shortsighted Park Slopers are when it comes to their best interests. You want me in that bar! You need me in the bar!
Oct. 5, 2011, 4:27 pm
j j from Ps says:
O my god. Once I had LSD: slipped into my sacrament in a Methodist church in the 60's. Everyone said it was the best sermon the minister ever gave.

I don't feel like anyone put anything in my wine at Lou's place.
July 25, 2012, 8:07 pm

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