Winifred Carson-Smith 0

Save the Islander Restaurant

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The Islander Restaurant is located at 12th and U Streets, NW in the midst of a commercial nightclub district; with at least 10 nightclubs and restaurants within a two-block radius of the Islander. Yet, individuals and the condominium association built next door to the Islander after it had been in existence over 10 years have chosen to target the Islander and attempt to close it. The residents have transmitted petitions, letters and other e-transmissions which include information that has not been documented. Moreover, the ABC Board conducted a months-long investigation, which found the Islander conducted its business within appropriate noise limits and issued one citation, based on noise on the outdoor terrace when the Islander conducted a voter registration drive. The Islander is a historic Caribbean restaurant whose night time crowd demographic includes those over 50, and those who enjoy jazz, caribbean, reggae music and sports; while other clubs in the area feature rap and punk rock music, have had altercations inside and outside of their premises; and on one occasion someone was killed outside of the club. However, the neighbors and the ABC board are questioning the license of the Islander. The District of Columbia ABC Board will vote to remove the Islander Restaurant liquor license, based primarily on noise complaints which we believe are unjustified, inappropriate and cannot be traced back to the Islander especially given the number of clubs within the 2 block radius of the Islander. For this reason, we ask that the ABC Board dismiss the complaint, allow the Islander Restaurant to retain its license and rethink its regulation of nightclubs which were in existence in a commercial nightclub zone when developers chose to build in a commercial district (and residents chose to purchase in area zoned for and having nightclubs).

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