Thursday, February 10, 2011

The future and past of 264 Bowery

Back in July, I sat through a CB2 meeting ... where 264 Bowery was on the agenda that night... a group of slicksters were hoping to turn the vacant space into a club tapas bar that would serve food until 3:30 a.m. The working name: Bowery Row.

The committee rejected that one. (Read more on it here.)

I was reminded of this yesterday while reading Eater's coverage of Tuesday's CB2 meeting. Another proposal was on the docket for 264 Bowery: Two fellows hoping to open English Road, a bourbon bar with southern food. They stated upfront that "we are not a club, just a bar" without any TVs. They'd be open until 4 a.m., have DJs ... and the lawyer mentioned how good the soundproofing was. As Eater noted, the info packet for English Road mentioned their security plan was "Chuck Norris approved."

The neighbors loved this! And CB2 denied the English Road request.

(BoweryBoogie has more on the history of 264 Bowery.)

Now I drift off again into lala land ... I wonder if 264 Bowery would/could ever be turned back into what it was in the 1930s.... a barber shop that didn't serve drinks or double as a clothing store...

Tri-boro Barber School photographed on Oct. 24, 1935. [Via the NYPL]


Goggla said...

This is a serious question that maybe someone out there can answer - why is a DJ necessary in a bar? I understand the desire for music (even though we're not allowed to dance legally in this town), but why not a jukebox controlled by the customers rather than a blaring DJ? When I see one set up in a place, I keep on walking...I guess I'm not the target customer, but I do go out a lot and do patronize a lot of places where I can talk to the people around me. Just seems to me the prospect of the thumping all-night music is one of the reasons residents are turned off by these new places.

Bowery Boy said...

I really love the period of Bowery history when there were Barber shops and Barber schools all up and down the road. Many had dorms in the back for the students to live while getting their unique education. Roughly, the days before restaurant equipment and lighting supplies, but after all of its daguerreian photography studios. Ah, the many lives of Bowery Lane.