Updated on June 28, 2016 at 4:18 p.m.
After previous reports that a lack of the correct Certificate of Occupancy (CO) at the former auto body shop would not stop Long Island City-based Rockaway Brewing Company from trying to get the appropriate licensing to open, the Queens Chronicle learned that the pop-up urban beach beer garden will not happen.
David Schwartz, principal at Slate Property Group — the group that will build the proposed 125-unit residential building at the site in September—was quoted in the Chronicle article saying, “We pulled the plug on the plan. It just became too much.”
On Tuesday, June 21, the New York State Liquor Authority (SLA) postponed voting on approving the beer makers’ request for a Farm Brewery Branch Office Permit until a proper CO was obtained. Now it seems that the vote will not be needed.
QNS reached out to Schwartz as well as to Marcus Burnett, co-owner of Rockaway Brewing Company, which was behind the La Playa project. Burnett declined to provide comment to QNS; we are awaiting a response from Schwartz.
The plan for the urban beach beer garden was met with disapproval from many of the Ridgewood residents who live in the vicinity of 176 Woodward Ave., as they were concerned over the potential for increased traffic, noise, littering and other problems.
The building is also saddled with two open Department of Building (DOB) “work without a permit” violations, as well as a stop work order under the alternate address for the site, 1881 Starr St.
“I’m not surprised that they withdrew their application. It’s June already, they wanted this to be a summer, warm weather [project],” said Gary Giordano, district manager for Community Board 5 (CB 5). “Certainly I can relate to the concerns of the residents, when you have an open-air facility there and you have homes on two sides and you don’t have the buffer of four walls to keep in the noise and any music they would be playing. And there are some outstanding building violations there as well.”