INWOOD — With the opening of 11 bars and restaurants on the western end of Dyckman Street since 2006, the strip has become a nightlife hotspot — much to the chagrin of some residents who say they must now contend with increased noise, large crowds and traffic jams.
Washington Heights-native Brendan Straw, who owns bars in Queens and Brooklyn, is hoping to open a 300-person restaurant and bar with a rooftop terrace at the corner of Dyckman Street and Sherman Avenue.
Some Uptown readers were excited by the proposal.
“I think this is great for the area. I frequently have to go down to Harlem or further downtown for restaurant options. I like the convenience of being able to walk home from a nice time at a restaurant instead of always waiting on the train or taking a taxi. I hope that it allows for more local residents to have employment opportunities.”
— Neighborhood Square user Uptown87.
Others felt the venue would be a headache for locals.
“As long as these venues are permitted to be open until 4 am, Inwood residents will be losing sleep. All the "commitments" in the world won't matter one bit when businesses serving liquor are legally permitted to be open that late.”
— Neighborhood Square user RoughAcres
Neighborhood Square user Kymberella agreed.
“We are already struggling with the influx of bars, hookah clubs, and poorly run restaurants on Dyckman Street. These places disturb neighborhood residents with the excessive noise at all hours and many are prone to violence. There are families with young children that live in this neighborhood that deserve businesses that provide them a better service.”
Neighborhood Square user Regina Gradess noted that she had seen the neighborhood change many times since moving there in 1960, and not always for the better.
“Now we have an influx of nightclubs with high decibel thumping music that carries up to the people trying to rest in their apartments. We have valet parking instead of people walking to the stores. We have burly security bouncers standing in front of the establishments who get paid to keep the peace,” she wrote. “My neighborhood is becoming a tourist attraction.”
Others were resigned to the influx of nightlife spots.
“It will fit right in. As a matter of fact it will connect both ends of the Dyckman nightlife scene. That's seems to be the goal [.] What can you do?”
— Neighborhood Square user Monica-Matos.
Community Board 12 voted against the proposal at its June 23 meeting. However, Straw and his business partner can still take their chances with the State Liquor Authority, which have the final say in granting a liquor license.