The city tore down an ornately decorated $25,000 outdoor dining shed Thursday belonging to a Manhattan arts hotspot — and the owners are torn about it, The Post has learned.
“It’s all our livelihood. We put every penny into this place,” said Mimi Blitz of restaurant and art gallery Pinky’s Space, who claimed she had received “no warning” that her disco ball and neon-decorated structure would be razed by employees of the Ministry of Transport. .
“I’m very emotional about this.”
The city had inspected the 30ft shed on East First Street and First Avenue earlier this month – but said nothing about plans to tear it down, she said.
They only told him to get rid of a vending machine that “wasn’t related to food” and pick up a trash can encroaching 6 feet in the amenity area between the shed and the sidewalk, Blitz said.
She said she quickly removed the machine and admitted she was unable to move the bin because some movers didn’t show up.
But she said DOT workers never cited that as the reason for their demolition when they arrived to demolish the shed on Thursday — and, in fact, gave her no reason.
“They didn’t tell us why. They said we were ordered by the city to take that down,” Blitz said.
Workers dismantled everything from the hangar’s wooden beams and astroturf to its decorative chandelier and small garden.
She said she got so mad that she tried to stop them, but the police threatened to arrest her.
“The cops said you’ll be arrested if you don’t move. They said the structure is collapsing, or the structure is collapsing and we will arrest you,” she said.
The DOT said the owners received three separate warnings about noncompliance and removal from the hangar starting in August.
“Open Restaurants helped save the industry at the height of the pandemic and made our streets more vibrant public spaces,” said DOT spokesman Vincent Barone.
“As we develop an ongoing program, we will continue to remove abandoned hangars and those with a history of gross violations to address quality of life complaints.
The city has already removed dozens of outdoor dining sheds in recent weeks and said it is considering more regulations for those that remain two years after the pandemic sparked the trend.
The crackdown comes after some Manhattan neighbors complained the structures attracted rodents and resulted in ransacked streets.
“We were still fighting the pandemic, but we were making it work. And then someone comes and takes it away for no reason,” she said.
She said she now wants the city to replace the colorful shed.
“We want our space back,” she said. “It was built with love and care.”
The Department of Transportation did not immediately return a request for comment on Thursday.
#NYC #demolishes #artsy #dining #shed #Pinkys #Space #angering #owners #warning