There will be a lawyer-lobbyist shoot-out tonight on the West Side as two sides face off on whether a new mega-club should open on a block long considered part of the Wild West – club-wise.
Club owners David Sarner and Robert Montwaid are looking to re-open the Pink Elephant in a 20,000-square foot site on West 28th Street where upwards of 2,300 people can party hearty. The location has been home to other troubled clubs, most recently the sprawling M2 Ultra Lounge which was shut down by the city in April amid reports of violence, drug dealing, cigarette smoking and other evidence of a good time had by all.
Times have changed, however. Local business owners and developers of new deluxe condos on the block aren’t happy about being next door to a club likely to be spilling partiers into the street into the wee hours of the night.
The new club proposal was shot down last month by a narrow 18-16 vote on the board, but it’s getting a do-over thanks to what Community Board 4 district manager Bob Benfatto says was a late-night technical foul-up in voting procedures. “It was a parliamentary error,” says Benfatto.
At the earlier session, opponents cited the club operators’ past problems, including outstanding tax liens they owe of $500,000.