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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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user1111 wrote:
FYI this ordinance was in play way before Prato came to JC... I heard about it last year 2014 when a few businesses were trying to open up on Ocean ave at one of our Block Association meetings. This has very little to do with Prato I do understand why you are all think so.

Many business owners who wanted to open up a cafe were being treated as if they were opening up a restaurant which is quite different.


This. I have been hearing about this for a while as well.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 18:21
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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user1111 wrote:
FYI this ordinance was in play way before Prato came to JC... I heard about it last year 2014 when a few businesses were trying to open up on Ocean ave at one of our Block Association meetings. This has very little to do with Prato I do understand why you are all think so.

Many business owners who wanted to open up a cafe were being treated as if they were opening up a restaurant which is quite different.


That's interesting to learn user1111. If correct, did the City try to solicit public input to help formulate the proposal? It would seem they had plenty of time.

I agree a well written Cafe Ordinance is something the City desperately needs. Unfortunately, as presently drafted the proposed Ordinance will create more issues than it will do good, IMHO. Fortunately, will some tweaking of the language it can easily be fixed. It's great that the City is looking at these kinds of changes in a creative manner. But please, ask the citizens of Jersey City for input. We have some really good suggestions!

Posted on: 2015/7/21 17:51
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Bamb00zle wrote:
For anyone interested:

The following item is listed on the Agenda for the Planning Board meeting today, July 21st, at City Hall, starting 5:30 pm.

?10. Review and discussion of proposed amendment to Land Development Ordinance Definitions for the addition of Cafes. Formal action may be taken.?



Here's a little background on finding these things for those who may not be familiar
Here's the link to the City's meeting Calendar:
http://jerseycitynj.gov/meetings-calendar.aspx

Not all public meetings are included. For example the Construction Board of Appeals, an open public meeting, does not appear. If you click on the name of the meeting you'll see the agendas and minutes and can open as interested.

And here's a little about Open Public Meetings:
http://hpcpsdi.rutgers.edu/NJHPg/downloads/sunshine%20Laws.pdf



I think the Cafe Ordinance discussion is to be moved to the Aug 4th Planning Board meeting instead of today.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 17:38
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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FYI this ordinance was in play way before Prato came to JC... I heard about it last year 2014 when a few businesses were trying to open up on Ocean ave at one of our Block Association meetings. This has very little to do with Prato I do understand why you are all think so.

Many business owners who wanted to open up a cafe were being treated as if they were opening up a restaurant which is quite different.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 17:31
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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The following item is listed on the Agenda for the Planning Board meeting today, July 21st, at City Hall, starting 5:30 pm.

?10. Review and discussion of proposed amendment to Land Development Ordinance Definitions for the addition of Cafes. Formal action may be taken.?


I don't think most people realize how much of an impact having just one place with backyard seating on your block -- or on the block behind you -- will have on your quiet enjoyment.

Backyards are the only quiet areas away from the constant street noise that we all have.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 17:25
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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This isn't about supporting more or fewer cafes. This is about changing residential zoning because one cafe didn't like the deal it made.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 16:49
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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For anyone interested:

The following item is listed on the Agenda for the Planning Board meeting today, July 21st, at City Hall, starting 5:30 pm.

?10. Review and discussion of proposed amendment to Land Development Ordinance Definitions for the addition of Cafes. Formal action may be taken.?



Here's a little background on finding these things for those who may not be familiar
Here's the link to the City's meeting Calendar:
http://jerseycitynj.gov/meetings-calendar.aspx

Not all public meetings are included. For example the Construction Board of Appeals, an open public meeting, does not appear. If you click on the name of the meeting you'll see the agendas and minutes and can open as interested.

And here's a little about Open Public Meetings:
http://hpcpsdi.rutgers.edu/NJHPg/downloads/sunshine%20Laws.pdf

Posted on: 2015/7/21 16:29
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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kencares wrote:
All backyards and courtyards should be banned for commercial use. It's a nightmare living above a bar or restaurant with patrons shouting and smoking and playing music all day and night. Keep it inside or out front. Give us some peace out back!


You have a valid point!

Posted on: 2015/7/21 14:57
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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I support more cafes!

Posted on: 2015/7/21 14:56
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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corybraiterman wrote:
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elsquid wrote:

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...two, i'm gonna (mis)quote a line here. i am a simple man. explain this to me, in small words, how seating on a sidewalk does anything to car traffic? please cite your work.


Small words: Don't have a study handy, but they've done them. Sidewalk cafe seating signals to drivers that people hang out here, and it's not a racetrack. And drivers, being humans, slow down. Other things that send the same signal: Lush street trees, public benches, artsy decorations of various kinds. Anything that says "YO, THIS IS SOMEBODY'S NEIGHBORHOOD. PEOPLE LIVE HERE. MELLOW OUT."


Fair enough. Just to devil's advocate here, almost no one is speeding on Eerie to begin with, as it's a 1lane oneway street.


I would disagree. People speed on Erie all the time.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 14:48
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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elsquid wrote:
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corybraiterman wrote:

Fair enough. Just to devil's advocate here, almost no one is speeding on Eerie to begin with, as it's a 1lane oneway street.


Probably true, more or less; people go 30, and I want them to go 20. (That speed limit is becoming the standard for narrow neighborhood streets from NYC to London and elsewhere, as Vision Zero and similar safety campaigns take hold.)

But yeah, sidewalk cafe seating would likely be more effective at traffic calming on the bigger boulevards, where the sidewalks have more room for it anyway.


I knew the difference in fatalities - ~50% at 30mph, 10% at 20mph. I didn't fully appreciate the shift in field of vision.

http://greatergreaterwashington.org/p ... etween-20-mph-and-30-mph/

Posted on: 2015/7/21 14:06
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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corybraiterman wrote:

Fair enough. Just to devil's advocate here, almost no one is speeding on Eerie to begin with, as it's a 1lane oneway street.


Probably true, more or less; people go 30, and I want them to go 20. (That speed limit is becoming the standard for narrow neighborhood streets from NYC to London and elsewhere, as Vision Zero and similar safety campaigns take hold.)

But yeah, sidewalk cafe seating would likely be more effective at traffic calming on the bigger boulevards, where the sidewalks have more room for it anyway.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 13:35
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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elsquid wrote:

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...two, i'm gonna (mis)quote a line here. i am a simple man. explain this to me, in small words, how seating on a sidewalk does anything to car traffic? please cite your work.


Small words: Don't have a study handy, but they've done them. Sidewalk cafe seating signals to drivers that people hang out here, and it's not a racetrack. And drivers, being humans, slow down. Other things that send the same signal: Lush street trees, public benches, artsy decorations of various kinds. Anything that says "YO, THIS IS SOMEBODY'S NEIGHBORHOOD. PEOPLE LIVE HERE. MELLOW OUT."


Fair enough. Just to devil's advocate here, almost no one is speeding on Eerie to begin with, as it's a 1lane oneway street.

Posted on: 2015/7/21 1:37
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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OneSkirt wrote:

Most people are saying that this needs to be refined, and not just automatically granted to ANY business out of the gate. ..let's say this new business under your windows over-packs its patio, plays loud music, keeps late hours..


Yes -- this is really crazy to allow! Just limit seating to inside & out front -- and make all owners jump through hoops if they want yard use of any kind!

Posted on: 2015/7/20 23:28
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Well said Oneskirt. IMHO the fundamental idea, a Cafe Ordinance, is great. The proposed wording, however, not so great. With changes, based on the sensible concerns aired here, it should be possible to get something that works well. Without changes it will make an unfortunate situation a whole lot worse.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 22:08
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Wishful_Thinking wrote:
I'm sorry, Squeeg - both as a homeowner and someone who enjoys outdoor cafes I have to support the new ordinance.

Living in the Heights, we don't have a lot of stylish dining spots - and the only ones with outdoor space I can think of are The Trolley Car and BBQ at Legal Beans (although that may actually be in the Village). The crowds outside on the patio are always pleasant and I've never heard it get so noisy as to be objectionable. These are wonderful amenities, that bring a nice, urbane vibe to the neighborhood - sidewalk and garden cafes, whether ritzy or down home, are super popular in cities all over the world, and I welcome more of it in JC. I'm sure if these businesses want to keep their licenses and the good will of the neighborhood, they will monitor their customers.

And not everyone has a house - you shouldn't assume we all have huge places and private backyards. I live in an apartment - our building has no outdoor space - so these places are where I can take friends and family in nice weather to enjoy a drink and food outside.


Most people are saying that this needs to be refined, and not just automatically granted to ANY business out of the gate. Think about it. Do you want a place to open right behind your windows with outdoor seating and yet you have absolutely no input? What if its a place that opens super early/stays open late? And you have zero input on it because this current version of the ordinance doesn't require any community input and businesses get this automatically. And let's say this new business under your windows over-packs its patio, plays loud music, keeps late hours and is basically not what you thought you'd get. You'd be ticked off as all get out, but you couldn't do anything about it under the current version of the ordinance which gave the business this use of the yard as of right.

Its much more sensible to allow this on a case by case basis with a variance, which gives a balance between the business' needs and the residents' needs, based on the unique size/type/location of the business in question. Some mid block locations might be excellent locations for businesses to have backyard seating, but others are not. The current ordinance doesn't differentiate, its way too broad.

So you see, its not black and white. We have the option - and its the most sensible one - to oppose the current sweeping legislation, and push for something better that is customize-able. Its not a FOR or AGAINST situation if you really think about it.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 20:50
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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corybraiterman wrote:
couple things. one, keep in mind that many of the sidewalks in dtjc aren't that wide to begin with. talde/corrino's seems fine because that sidewalk is a good.... 15? feet. prato's is on a shorter block, but their front seating isn't that bad because their storefront is set in from their neighbors. that house on the corner has fences that reduce that sidewalk to like, 6 feet.


Definitely need to avoid squeezing pedestrians off the sidewalk, or it will indeed be a negative.

Quote:
...two, i'm gonna (mis)quote a line here. i am a simple man. explain this to me, in small words, how seating on a sidewalk does anything to car traffic? please cite your work.


Small words: Don't have a study handy, but they've done them. Sidewalk cafe seating signals to drivers that people hang out here, and it's not a racetrack. And drivers, being humans, slow down. Other things that send the same signal: Lush street trees, public benches, artsy decorations of various kinds. Anything that says "YO, THIS IS SOMEBODY'S NEIGHBORHOOD. PEOPLE LIVE HERE. MELLOW OUT."

Posted on: 2015/7/20 20:08

Edited by elsquid on 2015/7/20 20:29:31
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Wishful_Thinking wrote:
I'm sorry, Squeeg - both as a homeowner and someone who enjoys outdoor cafes I have to support the new ordinance.

Living in the Heights, we don't have a lot of stylish dining spots - and the only ones with outdoor space I can think of are The Trolley Car and BBQ at Legal Beans (although that may actually be in the Village). The crowds outside on the patio are always pleasant and I've never heard it get so noisy as to be objectionable. These are wonderful amenities, that bring a nice, urbane vibe to the neighborhood - sidewalk and garden cafes, whether ritzy or down home, are super popular in cities all over the world, and I welcome more of it in JC. I'm sure if these businesses want to keep their licenses and the good will of the neighborhood, they will monitor their customers.

And not everyone has a house - you shouldn't assume we all have huge places and private backyards. I live in an apartment - our building has no outdoor space - so these places are where I can take friends and family in nice weather to enjoy a drink and food outside.


I'm just echoing much of what has been said, but this ordinance is overly broad. You are probably right about the Heights and the need for more dining options. But that doesn't mean that the entire city needs to be impacted. They can designate specific areas that would benefit from this kind of thing. It should be focused and brought about by the neighborhood that will house and support these places.

The way this is being done is shady and back handed to the constituents that Osborne and Fulop purport to be working for.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 18:37
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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I'm sorry, Squeeg - both as a homeowner and someone who enjoys outdoor cafes I have to support the new ordinance.

Living in the Heights, we don't have a lot of stylish dining spots - and the only ones with outdoor space I can think of are The Trolley Car and BBQ at Legal Beans (although that may actually be in the Village). The crowds outside on the patio are always pleasant and I've never heard it get so noisy as to be objectionable. These are wonderful amenities, that bring a nice, urbane vibe to the neighborhood - sidewalk and garden cafes, whether ritzy or down home, are super popular in cities all over the world, and I welcome more of it in JC. I'm sure if these businesses want to keep their licenses and the good will of the neighborhood, they will monitor their customers.

And not everyone has a house - you shouldn't assume we all have huge places and private backyards. I live in an apartment - our building has no outdoor space - so these places are where I can take friends and family in nice weather to enjoy a drink and food outside.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 18:29
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Bamb00zle wrote:
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ianmac47 wrote:
The whining complaint about allowing cafe seating....


Hmm...

Although I like the idea of having quiet, neighborhood cafes available all over the City, this Ordinance needs improving. Much as I like Prato Bakery and think it's a great addition to Downtown, it concerns me that the Ordinance appears to have been introduced to ?fix? the mess they seem to be in with backyard seating. Without a thoughtful, considered approach, the risk of unintended and damaging consequences is too great.

The City needs a Cafe Use Ordinance. BUT, IMHO backyard seating should NOT be allowed. Inside, front yard and sidewalk (per current requirements) are OK. But backyard has too much risk of disturbing the quiet enjoyment people have a right to expect inside in their apartments and homes. Noise bouncing off backyard brick walls is very disturbing.

The ordinance should be carefully worded to prevent any use change by sleight of hand. For example, include a provision to automatically revoke the initial Cafe use approval if an application for another use is made. Require that any new application be posted prominently on the front of the Cafe for 30 days. The Cafe would have to close for at least 30 days, or until the review was completed, and everyone could see the new Use application. This would effectively discourage change of use ?creep.? I don't want a quiet cafe on my block turning into ?Talde.? The noise from that place is unbelievable.


This is dead on. The proposed ordinance is WAY too broad and affects the entire city, not specific to just one area. It needs to be fine tuned quite a bit. Otherwise, every establishment regardless of size or location (even mid-block residential areas) can use it. The backyard component is more the problem than the front sidewalk in most cases. There needs to be a review process per business ("variance" process) to all a backyard to have seating otherwise the noise factor is completely uncontrolled.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 13:52
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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yeah but what about the rapists, pedophiles, and thieves?

Posted on: 2015/7/20 3:09
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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couple things. one, keep in mind that many of the sidewalks in dtjc aren't that wide to begin with. talde/corrino's seems fine because that sidewalk is a good.... 15? feet. prato's is on a shorter block, but their front seating isn't that bad because their storefront is set in from their neighbors. that house on the corner has fences that reduce that sidewalk to like, 6 feet.

two, i'm gonna (mis)quote a line here. i am a simple man. explain this to me, in small words, how seating on a sidewalk does anything to car traffic? please cite your work.

Posted on: 2015/7/20 1:34
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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corybraiterman wrote:

And to the person spouting nonsense about "walkable", you are aware that sidewalk seating actually makes sidewalks less walkable, right?


Not necessarily. If it takes up too much of the sidewalk, then yes, it's now discouraging pedestrians, and even effectively closing the sidewalk for people in wheelchairs, people with shopping carts, etc.

But if it is kept to a manageable width, sidewalk seating is one of many positive "placemaking" factors for an urban block.

It tends to calm car traffic in the street next to it, and it attracts strolling pedestrians and cyclists and encourages them to linger, in a virtuous cycle that can make the whole streetscape safer, friendlier, and more livable.

Posted on: 2015/7/19 21:41
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Are rolons or toricos having patrons congregate in their backyards where your bedroom window is? No? Then it isn't a comparable situation.

And to the person spouting nonsense about "walkable", you are aware that sidewalk seating actually makes sidewalks less walkable, right?

Posted on: 2015/7/19 21:33
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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"The people slurp their lattes too loudly at 2 in the afternoon on weekdays!"

I live between Torico's and Rolon's.

All of you shut up with your petty noise problems. If I'm not complaining then you don't get to either.

There, I said it. Hurumph. Hurumph I say!

Posted on: 2015/7/19 18:29
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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JcDevil wrote:
Or, we can continue to make our city more vibrant, walkable, and enjoyable to people who actually want to live in a city. Hopefully, those of us with half a brain will contact our elected officials to express how much we hope this ordinance passes.

Get the NIMBYs out of here.


And those of us who have a full brain can tell them how much we don't want backyard commercial uses, cafe's included, so we can get some rest once in a while from our vibrant, walkable, enjoyable city.

Posted on: 2015/7/19 16:36
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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Or, we can continue to make our city more vibrant, walkable, and enjoyable to people who actually want to live in a city. Hopefully, those of us with half a brain will contact our elected officials to express how much we hope this ordinance passes.

Get the NIMBYs out of here.

Posted on: 2015/7/19 16:09
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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hero69 wrote:
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kencares wrote:
All backyards and courtyards should be banned for commercial use. It's a nightmare living above a bar or restaurant with patrons shouting and smoking and playing music all day and night. Keep it inside or out front. Give us some peace out back!
i can see the rationale in not allowing backyard and courtyard use, but definitely cafes should be allowed to use frontyard, sidewalk


I would suggest that tenants who find their quality of life diminished be allowed to break their leases and the city reimburse landlords for losses and tenants for moving expenses. Also, landlords of apartments above cafes be allowed to rezone them for offices.

Posted on: 2015/7/19 15:33
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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kencares wrote:
All backyards and courtyards should be banned for commercial use. It's a nightmare living above a bar or restaurant with patrons shouting and smoking and playing music all day and night. Keep it inside or out front. Give us some peace out back!
i can see the rationale in not allowing backyard and courtyard use, but definitely cafes should be allowed to use frontyard, sidewalk

Posted on: 2015/7/19 15:13
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Re: New Cafe Ordinance - Call to Action
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All backyards and courtyards should be banned for commercial use. It's a nightmare living above a bar or restaurant with patrons shouting and smoking and playing music all day and night. Keep it inside or out front. Give us some peace out back!

Posted on: 2015/7/19 12:22
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