Under Fire for Illegal Backyard, Sixth Ward Removes Glass Enclosure

Posted on: November 17th, 2014 at 9:35 am by
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The Sixth Ward on Orchard Street remains under fire for occupancy and egress issues concerning its illegal 90-seat backyard. From all angles, too. The Department of Buildings, State Liquor Authority, and Community Board 3 are reportedly applying pressure to force compliance. And now it appears the establishment is starting to buckle.

Last week, the seven-year-old neighborhood nuisance fully dismantled its controversial rear enclosure/billiards room. Digital projector and audio system were also removed from the housing. This action was essentially admission of violation. It follows two months after the Sixth Ward detached roughly 30% of the roof glass from the glasshouse to address the blocked residential fire escape.

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However, the establishment still intends to utilize the now-unenclosed space. Yup. This elevated platform contributes approximately 275 square-feet of additional backyard real estate to host more tables and seating (including non-fireproof banquettes). And the furniture is already in place.

Any usage of this back patio should be moot, though, considering there isn’t even a valid Certificate of Occupancy on record (expired 2007), nor a public assembly permit. This address has actually been denied such permits by the DOB 3 times – 2001, 2007, 2013. Ergo, maximum patrons allowed to gather in the establishment (including yard, if permitted) is only 74.

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Not to mention, the yard itself is a death trap with no secondary egress for emergencies. Though there once was an exit into the alley that runs along the north side of the building. This was sealed for use as an entrance to the apartments above American Apparel.

The Sixth Ward will face off against CB3 tonight in an attempt to renew its license; this was a reversal by the committee who previously thought public forum wasn’t necessary for this applicant. Of course, the board’s position is strictly advisory…

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