Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Taking a peek at Nude Dancing

How did a city that spent HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS to keep from having a strip club locate in the city find itself facing multiple applications for 'adult entertainment'?

The quick recap is, after battling Paul Viveros for years to keep adult entertainment out of his establishment in the city's industrial park in 2005 the city prevailed. While defeating this one attempt the city tried to create an adult entertainment zone that would meet the letter of the law but make establishing any such business highly unlikely. The courts ruled the city's efforts unconstitutional.

Amazingly after defeating the Oliver's proposal the city seemed to have lost interest in developing a zone that would safeguard the city's best interests.

So more than 2 years later 'adult entertainment' springs up when the Regatta applies for a license. Now our new mayor says it's time to create a zone and people, maybe seeing their last chance start crawling out of the woodwork with proposals.

Let's take a peek at the venues we have to choose from:

The Regatta - Promising to be no " five-and-dime strip joint", the ownership of the Regatta proposed to turn the right half of the building into "upscale adult entertainment club." Thankfully, despite the assurances that "this would not be a crackhouse strip club", the city denied the application. Consider the number of families that visit Battleship Cove and the Marine Museum. Think about the number of people who utilize the boardwalk, and the number of family events that take place at Heritage State Park. Really is there a worst place to put a strip club? Thankfully the Arts Overlay District may put an end to this proposal but if not the Regatta ownership is always willing to settle for an '18 and over' license.

Oliver's - Isn't it a little ironic that the location the city tried so hard for so long to keep from getting adult entertainment may just be the best place to put it? With the Mayor clearly intent on finding a zone for adult entertainment Paul Viveros says “We must finally admit that it is simply the best location.” I have to admit that I'm stumped to think of a better one. Back when Viveros first attempted to establish adult entertainment I was one who thought it was a bad location. Now, I'm forced to admit this is the location that has the least negative impact on the community. The Oliver's proposal may have it's detractors, namely the tenants OF the industrial park, but I would challenge them to come up with a better location.

Davol Street Station - Have you ever wanted to put your fist through your car radio? I did several times last week when I'd hear Michael 'The Hurricane' Herren on WSAR say he thought this was a great location for a strip club. To his credit, Herren revealed that the owner is a friend of his father. I suppose friendship overrides common sense. How can anyone think this is a good location? the only thing that separates the Davol Street Station from our waterfront is the raised section of route 79. Remove that section, which we plan to do, and you have another Regatta. I know 'but the raised hightway IS there now and who knows how long it will take to tear it down'. I get the argument but I'm not buying it. We have to stop screwing up our long term plans for short term gains.

Miller's Pontiac - Think about it, decades ago men would walk in to admire and lust after the waxed bodies on display. Today a local businessman wants to buy the former car dealership so that men will walk in, and admire and lust after the waxed bodies on display. However there is a pretty big difference between a topless Firebird and a topless dancer. While this isn't technically part of the waterfront it is close enough where it should be considered a 'tie-in' location. Al Mac's diner is a local landmark and Bicentennial Park is in walking distance. It's impossible not to realize that in the future when Rt. 79 is replaced by an 8 lane boulevard that this is area is going to be a big 'tie-in' to our waterfront. Allowing a strip club here isn't going to enhance this area, it's going to bring in an element of seediness.

Lefty's view: If I had to pick one of these locations it would have to be Oliver's. It simply is the least objectionable location. However establishing an adult entertainment zone has proven to be an obstacle in the past. I think it's time for our City Councilor's to consider establishing non-adult entertainment areas so if we can't figure out where to have it, we can at least rule out where we won't.


RadioKeri said...

If the city chooses Olivers ... (which it won't) you can kiss your security cameras goodbye. Why would the owners of businesses in the industrial park pony up the check needed to PAY for the cameras (which hasn't happened yet) if the city is just going to put the strip club in an area that is going to hurt their businesses?

Lefty said...

If the city chooses Oliver's the industrial park shouldn't pay for the cameras. The city will have to find another way to pay for them.

I understand that the industrial park doesn't want adult entertainment there, but where is better?

Anonymous said...

According to SRPEDD's Commuter Rail Task force, a commuter rail station with a 500 spot parking garage is proposed about a block from the Davol Street Station.

Considering that there are also plans to flatten Route 79, the Regatta and the Davol Street Station will be in line of sight and a stones throw away from each other.

It's just not acceptable to have a commuter rail station, which people could use to visit Battleship Cove, that requires navigation between 2 strip clubs.

Certainly keeping strip clubs away is the easy part. The hard part is determining the location of the adult entertainment zones. It shouldn't be too long until the Mayor's proposals are revealed.

Lefty said...

According to a March 22, 2005 article the Industrial Park Association expressed a willingness to consider adult entertainment in the Industrial Park but was opposed to it being at the entrance.

So maybe that's something we should strongly consider.

Anonymous said...

Some additional thoughts:

Certainly a lot of the issues I have with a strip club in the Industrial Park is that Oliver's is located right at the entrance of the Industrial Park.

However, if a location is chosen within the Industrial Park that does not include Oliver's, that's just an invitation for another lawsuit.

On another note, the owners of the Regatta have stated that part of the decision to seek a license for adult entertainment is to bring in additional revenue.

Here's a business tip: You gotta spend money to make money. Driving or walking by the Regatta, it does not look like an inviting place - consider painting the building and some landscaping work to make the property more pleasing.

Second, advertise! Is the Regatta even advertising? They have a great location, they should reach out to customers.

For example, if you go to www.regattaonline.com you will learn that "The Regatta is heating up for the summer of 2006."

... SUMMER OF 2006 !!!

Anonymous said...

Does anyone still believe we are getting those security cameras? City officials have been talking about them for at least 2 years, I think we should start referring to them as the phantom cameras but whether or not we get them I agree with lefty that in hindsight it appears that the Industrial Park is the best place. It won't go there though because Bob Karam doesn't want it there and he backed Boob Correia very strongly and can also demand that his staff at WSAR attack what is the only logical solution at this point since it would impact the least amount of people.

Anonymous said...

The adult entertainment zone needs to go in the Industrial Park not at Oliver's the entrance. There is plenty of land in the park. There are no schools,no churches, and no parks. The businesses could live with a strip club and still remain in business. Keep this activity off the waterfront on either side of Rt. 79, away from schools like the President Avenue location, and out of neighborhoods. We can buy our own security cameras it cheaper than another adult zone lawsuit. Let's make these strip clubs pay for land and buildings if the want to open a strip club.

kestrel9000 said...

Lefty said:

Today a local businessman wants to buy the former car dealership so that men will walk in, and admire and lust after the waxed bodies on display.

Strippers wax themselves?
Or do they have someone to do it for them?
Sounds like great work, if you can get it.

adv said...

Wow, talk about originality. Look at all the greedy f**krs coming out of the woodwork hoping for that lucky roll of the dice.

Let's step into the Wayback Machine and imagine what would have happened had Prince Eddie swallowed his pride and let Oliver's have a damned strip club.

But no, lest we forget that politicians love fodder like this. It causes a great distraction from the real issues, which in Fall River are of course the perpetually horrendous educational system, the continued lack of a substantive local economy, and of course, crime.

Mayor Bob should be thanking Prince Eddie for this gift horse. And with such a deeply investigative and inquisitive rag as The Herald News to do the people's bidding, the citizens of Fall River can rest assured that Mayor Bob can notch a few more months off of the retirement-boost chart with this distraction. And when that's finished, the LNG topic can be dusted off and before you know it - election time has come again...what a city.

General said...

I have some comments to make on this subject:

1. Whether you want a strip club or not is irrelevant - it is protected by the Supreme Court and the constitution.

2. The city did not do their duty (especially Lambert) when they did not set up a zoned area for strip clubs.

3. If one strip club opens along the waterfront it will create more jobs along the waterfront than Ken Fiola has done in all the years he was the head of FRAUD - oopps I mean FROED! (And he gets paid over $100,000 a year)!!

4. This is just one of many screw ups that Lambert left us with. (Can you imagine he is now the head of Urban Planning at UMass Dartmouth. What he did to Fall River he wants to do to all of S.E. Mass!!)

Anonymous said...

Not a fan of strip clubs but at least Fall River is talking about economic development now, even if it is the wrong kind. Haven't heard anything at all from Bob Correia about economic development in his first 80-90 days or so and I think he is closing in on 100 come April. Aren't you supposed to show that you are trying to get a lot done in your first 100 days? I thought that was a big benchmark in politics but so far no economic development or anti-crime initiatives from Correia. So far so bad...

Lefty said...

Interesting point...Mayor Correia has made some news and but anti-crime and economic development are two areas we have yet to hear anything about.

Except of course in how they relate to strip clubs. It may be economic development but it doesn't belong in our waterfront area.

Anonymous said...

The 3 legs of Correia's "3 legged stool" that he kept talking about toward the end of the campaign were education, crime and economic development. No crime or economic development news so far and the only education initiative he can claim credit for is the idea of opening one of the new schools to the community as a whole but that was a Lambert idea that just never got implemented and Correia hasn't actually even implemented it but supposedly we will see it happen come September. Still, 1 education proposal and none on crime or economic development yet? Sad! He should've spent less time in the beginning throwing parties and got down to business. Personnel changes are nice and necessary as well as removing televisions but how much of our time has been consumed with stories about these things and none of the other bigger picture stuff that he promised?