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Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Liquor Moratorium Proposed for Broadway

Posted By on Wed, Mar 5, 2014 at 2:00 PM

Broadway Street in San Francisco - FLICKR/SEISMIC_2000

When you think of Broadway, the first thing you think of is probably bars and strip clubs. However, the street may be about to undergo a huge change.

David Chiu, the President of the Board of Supervisors, has proposed a liquor moratorium for the Barbary Coast neighborhood, which would ban any new bars from opening on the stretch of Broadway between Columbus and Montgomery. This area is currently home to nine strip clubs, four of which sell liquor, and several bars.

Basically, the ban would prohibit any businesses from obtaining any new liquor licenses, called type 48s. Restaurants with a type 47 liquor license, which authorizes the sale of alcohol where food is also sold, would still be allowed to sell liquor for consumption on the


"The community has made it clear that it wants fewer of the kinds of clubs that have

caused problems historically," Chiu said in an email to the San Francisco Examiner. "This proposal is important to their efforts."

However, not all members of the community are in favor of the ban.

In an email to SF Weekly, 88-year-old Alyce Craft told us that her family has owned property at Broadway and Kearny for 150 years.

"Our family's goal is to put offices upstairs and to have an upscale lounge occupying the two commercial spaces downstairs," Craft said of her family's plan for the building, which previously housed a massage parlor, an adult toy store, and a dive bar. "We thought the neighborhood would be happy to see the porn store and the massage parlor go away, but now they have asked Supervisor Chiu to draft a moratorium."

Craft said she feels the moratorium is aimed directly at her family.

"The same supporters of the proposed moratorium are endorsing new bars at the former Lusty Lady space, directly across from our Kearny frontage just off Broadway, and at the former Jazz at Pearls," Craft says, "both of which are in the same census tract as we are, and are less than a stone's throw from our front door."

Craft also notes that although the ban was allegedly proposed because of high crime rates in the area, recent crime reports show that the majority of the crimes occur in businesses that already have liquor licenses.

Gardner Kent, the owner of Green Tortoise Hostel on Broadway St., told the San Francisco Examiner that he thinks all the ban will do is make bars that already have liquor licenses "more valuable," calling the moratorium a "misguided attempt to clean up the street."

The Planning Commission postponed the legislation last week, and no decisions have been made as of yet.

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Jessica Nemire


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