So… I just got back from the zoning board hearing at Albany’s City Hall regarding Sneaky Pete’s Nightclub’s request for a Use Variance for a proposed location in the warehouse district.
It was a very interesting hearing.
… thank you for listening :)
So… it was difficult to sit in that court room and listen to Sneaky Pete’s proposal. The owner of the nightclub spoke, as well as his attorney, and also his architect Bob Bucher from Design Logic, who I have used previously professionally, let me just say that I don’t doubt he would do an excellent job with the fit-up of the space.
NearlyÂ every single business and property owner, who has resided in the Warehouse District for years, showed up to say something in protest to Sneaky Pete’s Nightclub moving into their neighborhood. It felt like a heartfelt group of very concerned citizens who have a genuine worry and fear about this nightclub moving in next door.
My main concerns are the following:
1. Â This proposed locationÂ is NOT an allowable use for a nightclub. Â It’s not like, “they have every right to be down there”. Â They don’t. Â The City of Albany would have to give Sneaky Pete’s a Special Use (i.e. special permission) to open up in the warehouse district.
2. Â Sneaky Pete’s Â will be using 11 (ELEVEN!) security wands at the door to frisk everyone who enters to make sure no weapons get inside the building.
Let me say this. Â We don’t need wands at the biergarten. Â I know Stout and The Barrel Saloon don’t need them. Â Why? Â Because we don’t have customers who carry guns. Â Yes, we do get your occasional crazy college kid, but they’re carrying an armed iPhone ready to Facebook Poke the shit out of you, they’re not carrying a gun. You can draw your own conclusion, but don’t you think it’s concerning thatÂ even the owner realizes the danger potential of his own club and needed to purchase 11 wands to scan for weapons??
3. Â According to their “Security Measures” statement, and I quote, “We purchased 2 Megaphones with sirens to disburse crowds and inform them of anything going on outside in the parking lots”.
Wait, what?? Â I live outside your establishment. Â I walk my pups outside in your parking lot. What’s going on that you need megaphones and sirens?! Â And where are they disbursing to? Â Do I need to start carryingÂ my own poopy bag when I walk the dogs, because this is sounding very scary.
4. Â ”On any given night, they can have up to 800 people show up to the Club”…. including….Â HIGH SCHOOL NIGHT. (The owner said that. Â Eight Hundred People. Â High School Night. I didn’t even know they had that.)
Those two things make me scared straight (resist it.Â too easy).
What happens to the weapons-carrying-customers who set off the 11 wands? Â Or the few hundred people who don’t get let in for whatever reason? Â IÂ totally realize that most of the people who will go to Sneaky Pete’s are probably super nice, amazing dancers. Â But what about the crazy ones who are smart enough to leave their weapons in the car (because they read Friday Puppy and now know about the 11 wands), and they’re drunk and their weapon is in the car. Â I’m being speculative of course, but that scenario is terrifying.
5. Â Lastly, and probably above all things, my home (as well as the home of 4 other families) is a stone’s throw away from the proposed site. Â It really terrifies me to think of living next door to a club that has 800 13-20 year olds going to it. Â I know this last one pretty much only affects me, but hey, it’s my silly blog.
When it’s all said and done, I would be incredibly surprised if The City of Albany gives their approval for this Use. Â This nightclub in particular comes with a history of bad behavior,Â and virtually every business owner and residential people (all 1o of us humans and four dogs:) strongly oppose it.
Please, City of Albany. Â Things are looking up over here in the Warehouse District. Â Let’s keep it moving in a great direction. Â Beautiful residential lofts are sprouting up. Solid, positive businesses (that don’t need security wands) are bringing happy people to North Albany finally.
Let’s continue our vision of an amazing Warehouse District.
Not a Warehouse Destruct.
(oooh, I like that!)