City orders 32nd Street Plaza nightclub shut Operators lacked permit for a dance hall

November 28, 1996|By Joan Jacobson | Joan Jacobson,SUN STAFF

It's been more than two years since the residents of Abell have been able to sleep in peace, as rowdy patrons of the nearby New 32nd Street Plaza nightclub cruised the streets, brawled and waged gun fights.

But now they have a fighting chance for quiet.

Yesterday the city's Department of Housing and Community Development issued a zoning violation notice ordering the club in the 400 block of E. 32nd St. to shut down because it lacks an occupancy permit for a dance hall.

The order came after a shooting Sunday night near the club, when two people were wounded, according to police. Sgt. Jack Kincaid of the Police Department's Northern District said yesterday he would send officers to the club last night to make sure it was closed.

In August, the city liquor board indefinitely suspended the club's license, hoping to stop the noise and violence in the community. After police learned the club was allowing patrons to bring their own alcohol, a judge ordered the club to stop.

But the nightclub operators continued to bring in crowds and operate the club as a dance hall without alcohol, according to police reports. And the disruptions to the community continued.

The city housing department's latest attempt to shut the club may finally give the community some peace.

"I'm optimistic, but this has been a resourceful group of people, and they have managed to stay open," said Grenville Whitman, president of the Abell Improvement Association.

"We had two teen-agers shot Sunday night. This closure could not have come at a better time," he said.

Pub Date: 11/28/96

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