May 23, 2014 By Michael Florio
It’s sidewalk seating season in Astoria—and many restaurants are in the midst of getting the approval they need from the city to set them up.
Three owners went before Community Board 1 Tuesday seeking new licenses, while six sought to renew them.
The owner of Marketa, the popular restaurant that opened December at 37-17 30th Ave., put forward an application to establish an outdoor cafe area consisting of 20 tables and 74 seats. The outdoor seats would wrap around its 30th Avenue and 38th Street corner location.
The community board, however, argued that 74 seats were too many. It approved the application on the condition that the number was reduced to 62 seats—cutting back some of the seats that the owner wanted to place on 30th Avenue.
The decision was influenced, in part, by one resident’s fear that the seats along 30th Avenue would take up too much space, leaving little room for pedestrian traffic.
Meanwhile, the owner on Yogurt Le Crepe, which is opening at 29-02 Ditmars Blvd this month, was approved for a 10 table, 20-seat outdoor café. Seven of the 10 tables will be on the Ditmars Blvd side.
The Thirsty Koala, located at 35-12 Ditmars Blvd, applied for a six table, 16 seat outdoor café. The board approved its application.
Several businesses, such as Uno Chicago Grill, Othello Deli and Off the Hook, renewed their outdoor café licenses without any issues.
However, two local businesses that sought to renew their licenses were required to make changes.
Martha’s Bakery, located at 36-21 Ditmars Blvd, applied to renew its license that currently permits it to put out 21 tables and 41 seats. However, in response to complaints that 3 tables are too close to a tree, the bakery agreed to cut the number of tables back to 18 and remove five seats.
Meanwhile, Christos Steak House, located at 41-08 23rd Ave, did not have a representative at the meeting. However, the board approved their request, if they agree to remove two of their 15 tables. No reason was stated at the meeting why the two tables were not permitted.