A discussion of the 2023 budget, the fate of al fresco dining, and a street co-naming were just a few of the items on the October 20 agenda.e Community Board meeting 18 (CB18), held at the council office, 1097 Bergen Avenue, and via WebEx for participants who preferred to participate online.
When COVID-19 closed indoor restaurants, the Open Restaurants program, which was enacted under an emergency executive order, not only saved businesses, but also gave New Yorkers the ability to dine safely outside. Following directions from the mayor and council legislation, the city began work on a permanent successor to the open restaurant program. In June 2021, the New York Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Department of Planning (DCP) proposed an amendment to the city-wide zoning text to remove geographic restrictions on the location of cafes. – terraces. Basically, the amendment would reduce bureaucracy for restaurants and make it easier for eating establishments to open more sidewalk cafes.
After a discussion on the pros (supporting local businesses and potentially creating more jobs) and the downsides (take-out parking, sidewalk congestion and snow removal issues), a majority of board members voted to reject the amendment to the zoning text for the open restaurant program. .
CB18 District Manager Sue Ann Partnow said board and community members have submitted requests for the Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 capital and expenditure budget. has 40 capital requests and 12 expense requests that are submitted, âshe said. “Items that were not completed in FY2022 will be resubmitted with new additions for Budget 2023.”
The requests included improvements to the parks, including the Lenape Playground on U Avenue, the replacement of the rusty Salt Marsh walkway in the Marine Park, the addition of pÃ©tanque / pickleball courts and a park for dogs in McGuire Park on Bergen Avenue and the installation of better security lighting in Canarsie Park.
Other items in the investment budget included reconstruction and paving of Paerdegat 9e Street due to the shipwreck and the creation of a Canarsie Community Center at the old Canarsie Theater on L Avenue or at a site near 69e Pregnant.
The expenditure budget requests included economic development of the Rockaway Parkway corridor, including street cleaning, maintenance, capital improvements, beautification and revitalization of small businesses.
A proposal presented by board member Paul Curiale to co-name the corner of Avenue W and East 73rd Bergen Beach Street in honor of Patrick Solomita was approved unanimously.
Curiale said Solomita created the Bergen Beach Youth Organization with John Malone. âOriginally, it was the Little League Saint-Bernard, then in 1980, it became the Bergen Beach Youth Organization, where it still exists today.
âA prestigious organization in baseball, football, soccer and senior programs, thousands of young people and seniors have been served through the work of Patrick Solomita,â said Curiale.
He described Solomita as a man âwho gave and sacrificed his life for his youth, his country, the police department (he served as a detective and sergeant), New York City and Bergen Beach.
Solomita passed away in February 2019. He lived on W Avenue for 62 years and is survived by his wife, Margie, who still lives in Bergen Beach, three children, nine grandchildren, a great-grandchild and two daughters-in-law.
âHe was a very dear friend with whom I worked for many years. When we name the streets it’s a great honor, but we would prefer the person to be here, âsaid Curiale. A memorial pond that Solomita helped create will also be dedicated in her honor.
The next CB18 meeting will take place on Wednesday November 17the, in person and virtually.