Kemistry Lounge Park Slope

Slope battles another bar near Barclays

The Brooklyn Paper
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Park Slope residents say a planned music venue just blocks from the soon-to-open Barclays Center gives new meaning to the term “bad chemistry.”

Neighbors of the proposed Kemistry Lounge on Flatbush Avenue say a venue with live performances, DJs, a full bar, dancing, and an exit on a residential block of Prospect Place will bring noise and ruckus to their quiet community.

“It’s disruptive; it turns the street into liquor lane,” said neighbor Harold Gruber. “It’s going to make it impossible to sleep.

Gruber and other neighbors are fighting the venue’s liquor license bid, saying the “Vegas-style” club — which is slated to accommodate 250 revelers in a grocery store-sized space until 3 am on Saturdays, 2 am on Fridays, 1 am on Thursdays, and 11 pm on other nights — will draw a rowdy not-from-the-neighborhood crowd.

Pointing to the bar’s since-been-removed Facebook page, which featured images of scantily clad ladies and described the club as “sexy,” neighbors claim the venue would be a booze-soaked nuisance and are urging its owners to close earlier and relocate the Prospect Place exit.

A spokesman for Kemistry, Peter Flores, promised the Prospect Place exit will only be used during emergencies and insisted the venue will be a good neighbor.

“It’s not a nightclub or a cabaret — it’s a restaurant–bar,” he said. “It’s nothing out of the ordinary.”

But neighbors of the planned venue fear noisy nightlife could become a way of life in northern Park Slope, where planned arena-side nightlife has already caused an uproar.

Last year, a proposed bar called Prime 6 became a proxy battle in the war over the Atlantic Yards mega-project when neighbors protested plans for a bottle service and live music, claiming the venue didn’t match the character of their neighborhood. The bar eventually opened as Woodland, a farm-to-table restaurant.

Neighbors also protested Player’s Gastro Pub and Sports Bar on Pacific Street at Flatbush Avenue, saying it would turn the street into a hub for drunken hoops fans.

Kemistry owner James Brown did not return calls and e-mails seeking comment by press time, but he recently told Park Slope Patch, which first reported the lounge drama, that he wants the venue to feature an art space with book readings.

“It won’t be as crazy as the community thinks,” Brown said.

Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at or by calling her at (718) 260-4505.
Updated 5:32 pm, July 9, 2018
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