Letter to the editor: NuBo ‘never belonged in that space’ and should not be allowed to continue

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To the editor: Today, three neighborhood children playing in the sun were nearly flattened in my driveway by a Porsche whipping in to turn around and cruise back down Gladys Avenue to get a parking space to go to New Bohemia Brewing Company. Happens all the time.

Residents park at the street edge of their driveways or have chains across them. My driveway is often the first opportunity for a turn around for the many, many people looking for parking for NuBo.

I was not one of the anonymous complainants mentioned in a recent Lookout article, but this is my opinion:

New Bohemia originally scammed the planning department and the county supervisor and the neighborhood when they converted the professional office space building into a bar.

Here is why:

  • They applied for a license to have a tasting room on the second floor.
  • They filled the first floor with stainless steel vats for brewing beer.
  • They told the neighborhood and the Central Fire chief and then-Supervisor John Leopold they wanted a 13-seat tasting room on the second floor.
  • The building was zoned as professional office space and had ONLY 13 parking spaces.
  • As soon as the license was granted, we (the neighborhood on Gladys Avenue) discovered the permit for a tasting room actually had a 10-to-120-person permitted occupancy.

So, New Bohemia promptly:

  • Removed most of the giant steel brewing vats on the first floor.
  • Converted the downstairs into a BAR with additional tables.
  • Changed its web page description from TASTING ROOM to TAP ROOM.
  • Began the circus of parking nightmares on Gladys Avenue.

Now, New Bohemia is a BEER GARDEN with virtually no parking.

If the business is allowed to open up indoor drinking and dining, it must NOT be allowed to retain the conversion of its parking lot into an extension of its restaurant.

In short: NuBo never belonged in that space and should not be allowed to push the intrusion any further.

Johanna Bowen
Santa Cruz