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La Marina's Proposed Seating Cut in Half After Community Outcry

By Carla Zanoni | May 29, 2012 7:25am
La Marina will be charged with maintaing the strip of beach at teh western end of Dyckman Street.
La Marina will be charged with maintaing the strip of beach at teh western end of Dyckman Street.
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Manhattan River Group

INWOOD —  A plan to open a massive restaurant along the Hudson River has been considerably scaled back after community members raised concerns that its originally proposed size would create quality-of-life problems in the neighborhood. 

When the owners of La Marina open their restaurant and bar in the coming weeks, the seating capacity will be capped at 500 — half the size of the original plan to get 1,000 seats in its application with the State Liquor Authority (SLA), according to Community Board 12's Harlan Pruden

The Parks Department, which manages the public space at the western edge of Dyckman Street, said that the space's concessionaire never received approval for the larger seating capacity. 

“[Concessionaire] Manhattan River Group stated in their SLA application that the maximum seating capacity is 1,000,” Parks spokesman Phil Abramson wrote in an email.

“But Parks had not approved that amount. When we did review the seating plans, which are subject to Parks' approval, we approved 500, which is what we felt was appropriate for this type of operation.”

The establishment’s owners did not respond to requests for comment. 

Earlier this year, residents said they were outraged that the city would allow a restaurant complex that large on Dyckman Street, complaining that noise, traffic and a generally diminished quality-of-life would affect the corridor, between Broadway and the Hudson River. 

The restaurant, previously presented as a seasonal establishment, will be open all year. 

If La Marina’s liquor license is approved by the SLA, the business will also operate fewer hours than originally proposed. The restaurant and lounge will close at 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and on Friday and Saturday at 12:30 a.m. 

Manhattan River Group had originally requested the restaurant remain open until 2 a.m. throughout the week.    

No concerts will be allowed in the space, and amplified music will only be allowed through a special Parks Department permit that requires it end by 10 p.m. 

Dancing will also not be permitted in the establishment. Although the owners had initially sought a cabaret license, they agreed to the limited terms on May 16, according to SLA documents. 

Community Board 12 voted to recommend the SLA approve La Marina's liquor license application in March, despite pressure from neighbors who were concerned about the size of the eatery.