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Monday, August 13, 2012

Armory Seeking Changes Through ZBA

The Arts at the Armory is seeking decreased regulation on the facility in order to "remain financially sustainable" according to a recently published online petition. 

The following requests are being put forth by the Armory to be taken up at a September 5th, 6pm ZBA meeting at City Hall:

1) An increase in occupancy, which will allow us to better serve the needs of the community with such events as the Somerville Winter Farmers’ Market;

2) Expanded hours that will allow us to open earlier and stay open two hours later (allowing us to better work with nationally touring music and theater groups);

3) Outdoor Café seating, which will enhance the on-street vibrancy in our neighborhood;

4) Cooking in our Café, which will allow us to better-cater to our customers, specifically in the cold winter months; and

5) The ability to apply for a liquor license, currently not negotiable within the buildings’ conditions.

The Armory goes on to write, "We believe strongly in the programming that we provide and believe that with the above-mentioned actions, we can live up to our full potential and fulfill our mission to an even greater extent. With your support, we will be able to continue and expand upon our daily cultural, educational, and healthy-living events and thrive as a centerpiece to the local economy. We hope you will sign our petition and also attend the hearing once it is announced in mid-August."

If you support the Armory's requests, you can sign the online petition, as well as, attend the meeting set for Wednesday September 5th at 6pm in City Hall.

You can also read about the request over at Davis Square Live Journal.

Corresponding Documents:
42 Conditions


Anonymous said...

I wonder how many of the "in-favor" petition signers shown on the clip provided are abutters or neighbors who will be impacted by the extended hours-(noise), patrons drinking, and the additional trafffic/parking volume.

Enhancing event people flow/attendance is the objective for requesting "relief" fromm the conditions of occupancy imposed from the get-go.

Because the "opposition" will be neighbors and abutters to the armory. No surprise if a "not-in-favor" resident petition will be generated shortly.

By the way----those "conditions" were no secret from the outset, and yet those who took over the armory still proceeded to agree and signed off on the deal---supposedy in good faith.

Doing what they did at the time, and now their request for "relief" of the original conditions, reminds me of the story about the camel sticking his nose in the tent---knowing once his nose was in, his body will someway,somehow, get in also.

Well, initially, the involved people did get their "nose in the tent"..and now the time has come for going for what they wanted to do from the outset....impacted homeowners and renters be damned.

Anonymous said...

No question, what these petitioners in favor of extended hours, full liquor license, etc., all in the name of the "Arts"----could care less about the impact on the neighborhood.

Yeah right----Johnny D's, and other venues in Davis Square, are all about "the arts" too.

It's called "entertainment" folks!

Hey, over in Medford, they converted their armory into a professional office building.

Anonymous said...

Is labeling it "The Arts" going to reduce the late night noise decibel level by any degree?

Is labeling/calling it "The Arts"...going to... create more parking spaces to accommodate the influx of additional vehicles where none now exist?

.....reduce the impact of increased vehicles and foot traffic in the neighborhood, with added hours, if granted?

......reduce the number of attendees who had one drink too many leaving the premises?

Given their reasons given for obtaining "changes" to the initial conditions imposed---i.e they want to gain an increase in event attendance; likewise, the "burden/impact" on the neighborhood will also increase further into the night, if extended hours are granted.

Anonymous said...

Re items on their petition:

#1)---Asking for an "increase in occupancy to better serve the needs of the community."

How about keeping the occupancy level where it is at, as initially agreed, to better serve the NEEDS OF THE NEIGHBORHOOD?

#2)---Asking for expanded hours "allowing us to stay open two hours later to better work with nationally touring music and theater groups."

How about keeping the late closing hours as they are,as initially agreed, TO BETTER WORK WITH THE NEIGHBORHOOD?

#3)--Asking for "outdoor seating that will enhance the on-street vibrancy in our neighborhood."


Anonymous said...

How their bid for increased occupancy they cite how winters farmers market would benefit from the occupancy increase, if granted.

As to neighbors opposition to farmers markets,few and far between; if at all.

What they fail to mention: increased armory occupancy,if granted, will also impact the neighborhood with those extended hours events,where hard liquor, in addition to beer and wine, if allowed, will have additional people hitting the neighborhood streets after 12 midnite, and or after 1:00 AM---as the case may be if extended hours are granted.

What's that old saying about fooling half the people most of the time; and all the people half the time; but not all the people all the time.

Anonymous said...

Parking!..Parking...Parking..City officials speak out of both sides of their mouths. Davis Square needs parking, City's solution eliminate municipal lot @ Herbert St. to build a hotel which will provide parking for "their' customers.

The "GLX" - "T" more bus routes created, more buses congregating at new GLX stations, more traffic backup..thus "BOING!" MORE POLLUTION!

More Development equals narrower streets, thus traffic backup = MORE POLLUTION! More multiple housing complexes, which on tv this past Sunday it was said that the buildings actually create more pollution negatively affecting the carbon footprint.

The people of Somerville are being taken for a ride and those who will benefit from it will be gone and no longer living in Somerville with all the negatives results those people created. WAKE UP PEOPLE!

Anonymous said...

About the "increased occupacy" asked for, and their citing the Farmer's's Markets as being the beneficiary of a granted increase.

The ebb and flow, persons coming and leaving the markets, lends itself to an "in-house occupancy very much variable---full occupancy never likely to be fixed and maxed out to the fullest....and never persons leaving after 12 midnite; and/or 1:00 A.M. in the morning.

Conversely----at nightime entertainment events by and large, max fixed occupancy is in-place (static) for several hours; with all in attendance exiting the building en-masse, at an early morning hour; individuals having consumed various amounts of alcoholic drinks.

Point: quite a difference as to their citing Farmer's Markets as benefitting from increased occupancy; and not a word about the impact nightime events (with increased occupancy & liquor) would have on the neighborhood.

Anonymous said...

SPD and 311 have no complaints from neighbors on record according to the last resistat meeting.

If it is as bad as you say, why are you not calling? Are you calling the armory?

Anonymous said...

Compare "Apples with apples" my friend.

The last resistant meeting cited no complaints on record from neighbors for the period, from opening to now, with the imposed 42conditions in place.
No reason to call anybody with a complaint--all went okay.

That will change with the NEW requests, IF granted, will be a whole new ball-game as to neighbor's complaints.

Anonymous said...

To the person who posted "no complaints from neighbors on record
according to the last resistat meeting."

Aren't you glad posting anonymously is allowed?

All the "potential" problems mentioned in all previous posts (here) are tied to the requested changes to the original forty-two conditions imposed, as agreed to by all parties involved.

At the time of that Ward 5 resistat meeting that you mentioned, the requested changes to the forty-two imposed conditions were just a rumor. Very much official at this time.

As previously stated: Mr. Sater, and his associates, agreeing to the forty-two conditions, allowed "the camel to get his nose into the tent."

Now they are going for getting the "camel's" whole body into the "tent."

Anonymous said...

The management team that was involved in running the armory under the 42 conditions (agreed upon by owners, neighbors) is gone with one more leaving soon. The new managers are just looking to make their job easier by ridding themselves of the conditions.

Anonymous said...

The names may change, but in changing the conditions of occupancy, the potential neighborhood problems remain the same.

BTW---Peter Sater, who originally bought the armory, his signature, as a Trustee, is on the current application request for the initial condition(s) to be "changed."

Appears he is still the "rider" on the camel's back with the camel's nose in the "tent."