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This New Yorker Wants to Grill on the Roof, But is it Legal?

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The skies have cleared up, which means thoughts are turning toward rooftop tanning and barbecues. But before firing up the grill, one reader wants to make sure these rooftop pastimes are legal:

Exactly what is an owner allowed to do or put on a rooftop or terrace? Assuming the FAR and landmark status do not allow adding a room or anything visible from the street, what other constraints are there? Can you put up an umbrella? A tent? An unheated greenhouse? And what is the real story on barbecuing? Brokers are saying it's don't ask, don't tell, and I am seeing big barbecues on many terraces. Does it matter if they're gas or open fire? Can you install an electric outlet? A water spigot for a hose? We aren't authorized to give real legal feedback on rooftop (or, well, any) matters. But, commenters, anyone have some unofficial advice to offer?
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