5 Thirteen Event Space, located at 73-02 Metropolitan Avenue, was a subject of discussion at Community Board 5’s October Public Safety Committee and several meetings with the NYPD.
These are the outstanding issues:
DOB – The Certificate of Occupancy is for a hardware store. No application has been made to the Department of Buildings to change the use of the commercial space to that of an event space.
DOH – Proof of vaccination is required to attend events or dine indoors in NYC. No one is checking for this as required. The smoke free air act prohibits the venue from hosting “puff and paint” events or allowing patrons to smoke inside the venue. The patrons are regularly smoking marijuana indoors and outside.
SLA – The site requires a liquor license to serve alcohol. They have been caught in the past serving alcohol. Patrons have also been observed buying it at other local businesses and bringing it to the venue. BYOB is illegal in NY. There are 3 fully licensed establishments within 500 feet of this space (Milan Sport, Pat’s and Kantu) which means a special hearing is required to determine if issuance of a liquor license is in the public interest, however they have not yet applied for one.
DEP – The plumbing code requires more than one toilet for patrons and there must be a handicapped accessible restroom available. Their video tour reveals that there is only one toilet in the facility and this is causing patrons to urinate in the street. There is no soundproofing in this facility and music from this venue can be heard blocks away.
FDNY – Occupancy limits have been exceeded posing a fire hazard. Patrons enter through a rear entrance and are asked to contact the venue via Instagram message or email to find out the address of the location.
NYPD – This venue has been vacated several times and at least one arrest and a shooting have been linked to patrons leaving this establishment. There are videos of fights in the street between patrons and other types of disorderly conduct. There is no parking for this facility and the patrons are parking illegally all over the neighbor- hood and preventing access to private property as well as fire hydrants, sidewalks and crosswalks. This one location takes up a lot of police manpower which is already lacking.
This is just one of several event spaces operating openly but illegally in the area. During the pandemic, commercial landlords took a hit and are desperate for rental income and seemingly don’t care who they rent to or for what purpose. The NYPD and other agencies are aware of the presence of these establishments and the civic association and Council Member Holden’s office are helping to monitor the locations and alert the authorities when illegal activity is observed. Unfortunately, cracking down on these places is currently not the priority it should be at City Hall. Hopefully that changes with the incoming administration.