Personally I think this is a bad move. I realize with the redevelopment of their current site they have to find something relatively quickly, but moving up to Gottingen would cause them to loose a lot of their current clientele. There has to be a better space that is still downtown for them.
Reflections Cabaret wants to move from Barrington to Gottingen
November 17, 2011 - 4:40am By CHRIS LAMBIE Business Editor
Opinions mixed on whether bar should be allowed to move into old Marquee Club
Wendy Friedman, shown in her downtown store in July, supports Reflections’ application for a cabaret on Gottingen Street. (ADRIEN VECZAN / Staff)
A downtown Halifax club’s plan to groove on up to Gottingen Street is receiving both praise and criticism.
Reflections Cabaret reached an agreement last month with property owner Victor Syperek to lease the top floor of the legendary live music venue at 2037 Gottingen St. that most recently operated as the Paragon Theatre but is probably best known as the site of the former Marquee Club.
The 10-year rental agreement is contingent on the provincial Utility and Review Board approving the transfer of Reflections’ operating licence from its current location on Sackville Street.
"My husband and I have lived on (nearby) Falkland Street for 14 years and have watched the neighbourhood develop and change," Wendy Friedman, who owns Biscuit General Store on Argyle Street, wrote in a letter to the provincial regulator supporting Reflections’ application for a cabaret licence at the new location on Gottingen.
The couple also own rental property on Falkland.
"We believe that businesses, such as Reflections, that create a vibrant and active neighbourhood will only serve to make this area more desirable," Friedman continued. "Their clientele is generally professional and law-abiding, and we have no concerns about their location down the street from our home."
Patrick Kelly wrote to the board opposing Reflections’ licence application.
"Reflections Cabaret moving to Gottingen Street should not be approved," Kelly wrote, "in appreciation of the strides made by the neighbouring areas to become a better part of Halifax. The area has grown in a positive direction as a largely residential neighbourhood with few arteries of access, and this would mean that an after-hours bar in the middle of it would only stunt or reverse this trend and reduce the quality of life for the many in the immediate vicinity of the address in question."
Traffic on Falkland would be disrupted regularly by the dance bar’s customers, as it was in the past, Kelly continued, "with some destructive patrons returning to their own, relatively more peaceful, neighbourhoods at the end of the night. There may be no official recognition of this reality in the official hearing documentation but it is a known reality and has a direct effect on those of us in near proximity.
"I’m as supportive as anyone of the need for vibrant nightlife in the city but this is the wrong licence in the wrong place."
Reflections owner Mike Schmid said last month that the larger space on Gottingen holds more potential for his business.
If the review board approves the licence transfer, Schmid indicated Reflections could be open in its new location before Christmas.
A public hearing on the matter is slated for Nov. 29 in the review board offices at 1601 Lower Water St.