In W’burg, it’s booze or bust for businesses

Even clothing retailers like Urban Outfitters are thirsty for liquor licenses

TRD New York /
Sep.September 15, 2013 04:00 PM

In Williamsburg, laid back drinking culture is such an important part of the neighborhood economy that even clothing retailers are vying for the ability to serve up spirits. Hip clothing shop, Urban Outfitters, which is currently developing a store at 98 North 6th Street, is one of many business betting that a liquor license will draw in hoards of hipsters.

Urban Outfitters’s application is still pending before Community Board 1, making it one of 37 other brand new applicants for a liquor license in the area. But not everyone is happy about the infusion of alcohol into everything Williamsburg, according to the New York Daily News.

“I can’t think of a circumstance for which it would be appropriate for Urban Outfitters to have a liquor license,” City Councilman Stephen Levin said in a statement. “We must ask ourselves, ‘Do we really want people drunk when they are buying their skinny jeans and ironic t-shirts?’”

This month 106 applicants went before the community board, mostly seeking renewals. And with the Greenpoint and Williamsburg area becoming one of the most active in terms of alcohol license applications, it may be difficult for some bars to get permits, Liquor Control Authority spokesman Bill Crowley told the Daily News.

“The more bars you have, the more likely you’ll have noise, people walking around at night,” CB1 Chairman Chris Olechowski added. “It becomes a quality life issue, absolutely. The noise will get worse for a lot of people.” [NYDN]Christopher Cameron


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