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Gentrifier Threatens to Quit LIC Over Bar Complaints

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The target of Long Island City condo mania has been young professionals seeking luxurious Manhattan living at (somewhat) more reasonable prices. These people, it will shock you to find out, like to drink. This hasn't been much much a problem, because this is Long Island City?and, c'mon, if you can't shotgun a Miller Lite and chest bump your buddies in Long Island friggin' City, then what the hell has happened to America? But now that the main drag of Vernon Boulevard is turning into a mini Avenue A, residents are fighting back with a fury normally reserved for Community Board 3 meetings. The Queens Chronicle reports that a seemingly routine liquor license transfer at LIC's Lounge 47 has turned into a total shitshow. Neighbors, some of whom have been known to spray hoses into the bar's garden (right, via Yelp)?and not in a friendly, watering-the-plants way?are irate over noise and other issues. The bar's potential new owner didn't show for the latest community board meeting, but that didn't stop 60 LICers from turning up and shifting the topic to an angry debate over the neighborhood's burgeoning nightlife scene. One brave soul decided to take them on:

Brett Banchek, who moved into one of the new L.I.C. highrises about a year ago, decried the general community feeling that there are too many bars on Vernon Boulevard. He said he doesn’t want to have to go to Manhattan for drinks. "If these restaurants move out, my family is going to move out," he said, adding that he thinks additional bars would be a boost to the neighborhood's economy and would make the area more vibrant and welcoming.

Other community members pounced on Banchek, and the meeting turned into a shouting match, with everyone talking over each other. Community members berated Bancheck and demanded to know whether he had ever lived directly adjacent to a bar and whether he has children.

Heated battles over bar noise? Congrats, Long Island City, you've finally grown up and become a real NYC neighborhood!
· No resolution on Lounge 47 [Queens Chronicle]