Art Bar in Superdive's Former Avenue A Space Rejected Again
EAST VILLAGE — An art-themed bar and restaurant that hopes to replace a notorious East Village dive was shot down once again Monday night — even after offering to cut back its hours.
The owners of 200 Avenue A — which previously housed the rowdy keg-service bar Superdive — have been trying for nearly a year to get a new liquor license and revamp the space as an art gallery with a bar and restaurant.
In an attempt to win over skeptical residents and Community Board 3 members, who fear a reincarnation of Superdive, the partners behind the project offered on Monday to cut back the proposed closing time to 2 a.m., instead of 4 a.m., from Wednesday through Saturday.
But residents said they see no reason for an art gallery to be open past midnight, and they would prefer that it just serve beer and wine, not hard alcohol.
Dale Goodson, 59, a member of the North Avenue A Neighborhood Association, said he and other residents met with the art bar's owners a couple weeks ago but did not believe the owners were making a good-faith effort to address locals' concerns about noise and late-night partying.
"Please deny this application," Goodson told Community Board 3's SLA Licensing Committee Monday night. "One Superdive was enough."
The committee agreed with Goodson and voted to reject the application, just as they did last May when the proposed closing time was 4 a.m.
Alexandra Militano, chairwoman of the CB3 committee, pointed out that the area is already oversaturated with liquor licenses, including 10 within a block of the Superdive space. She added that the East Village already has plenty of art galleries as well.
"The public benefit of having an art gallery is outweighed by the fact that the area is already known for artists and art galleries," Militano said.
The community board's vote is advisory, and the State Liquor Authority will make the final decision.
A lawyer representing the project chose not to respond to the community's concerns during the meeting and declined to comment afterward.