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Hours Reduced at Bar/Restaurant, Seating Increased  

By Jonathan Friedman
Lookout Staff

March 11, 2010 --The Parlor received a semi-victory and a loss at Tuesday’s City Council hearing. The council members voted for the restaurant/bar to close at 11 p.m. on weekdays and midnight on weekends. The council will allow a seat increase at the establishment located on Wilshire Boulevard off 15th Street, but not by as much as the building owner had requested.

Sherman Stacey, attorney for The Parlor, said on Wednesday that forcing an early closure will make it difficult to run a successful business. When asked if his clients will file a lawsuit, he said, “No decision has been made.”

The item before the council was actually an appeal of a Planning Commission decision filed by John Makhani, who owns the building. His attorney, Chris Harding, declined to comment extensively after the meeting because he is waiting for the City attorneys to produce a formal resolution based on the council vote.

“From the property owner’s perspective, we want to take every reasonable step to make The Parlor successful,” Harding said. “We want to continue to work with them to meet their objectives.”

Due to the type of permit application that was before the council, Makhani has some non-litigation options to go against the council decision.

Meanwhile, the council vote is being applauded by many of the residents living near the popular hangout, which opened in 2007. They say the business has created excessive noise and its customers are a nuisance to the neighborhood

“I was relieved,” resident Diane Krakower said of the decision. But Krakower said she expects it will be a long time before the new rules will go into effect as the hangout’s management and the building owner fight the decision. “These guys do like to delay. That’s their tactic.”


The Planning Commission had limited the seating to 135. Makhani requested the City Council increase it to 235. Council member Gleam Davis proposed a compromise of 175, a number which three of the other four council members in attendance accepted, with Council member Kevin Mckeown voting against it.

Davis said it was better to go with a compromised number of seats to prevent a situation in which The Parlor management and the building owner are “backed … into a corner where they don’t have any option but to litigate because we’ve effectively closed down their business.”

McKeown said he did not believe the higher amount reduced the chance of a lawsuit, and said by increasing the number of seats the council had “sold the farm.” He said his opposition vote “reflects the concern for the neighbors.”

Mayor Pro Tem Pam O’Connor responded, “That’s why we are all here tonight, because we are concerned about the neighbors; the neighbors who live with the negative impacts as well as the neighbors who come in to enjoy the operation.”

Although a majority of the public speakers were residents in favor of reduced hours and seating or more extreme measures, there were some supportive neighbors.

“I feel that The Parlor provides a nice vibe to the neighborhood and gives a fun, friendly feeling to the community,” said Day Vinson, who lives two blocks from the establishment.


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