Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Bar Bill plays to packed planning meeting

It was standing room only at a second public meeting this afternoon. On the South Side, there was a meeting from 10 to afternoon about PAT's service cuts. Meanwhile, South Siders jammed into the City Planning Meeting at 200 Ross Street for an afternoon session about the Bar Bill. The turnout from fellow citizens was fantastic.

I don't like the proposed bar bill. It isn't good for a lot of reasons. But, I love the fight. I love the effort. I love the spirit of citizens getting an upper hand on what is happening in the neighborhood.

The bar bill provides a new beach head for the war over our city and urban lives. That is good. We've opened another front and this will be an avenue for some to use to fight back.

One simple question, perhaps my first of many, is, "What about the upward measurement?"

The bill calls for no additional establishment (bar) to be built within a 150 foot distance of another bar, as measured from closest corner of the property to the other location's closest corner.

If, for example, the USX Tower had a pub on the first floor and then a TOP OF BUILDING nightclub wanted to open. Then what? Or, are they both within the 150 feet rule? The property lines overlap.

I want density. I want bars on the roofs and top floors of taller buiildings. I want street-level places too. If a new hotel is built -- say six or eight stories at South Side Works, then I'd love it if that building could have a club on the top floor and another on the first floor. But, the bar bill might prohibit such acts.

From china - bike ...

What do you think? How did the meeting go?

I did notice a lot of questions from the planning committee about other parts of town, not the South Side. They were more interested, it seemed, in Shadyside, Sq. Hill, and other neighborhoods -- not the South Side.

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