Mayor Scordino and the Babylon Village Trustees unanimously voted to extend the current restriction on new eateries through 2019. Parking issues and concerns about diversity in the types of business were noted as the major concerns.
The ban was enacted in January of 2017 and prevents the opening of new dining establishments in Babylon Village. Exceptions are allowed for businesses opening in existing eatery locations and those in new locations with fewer than twenty seats.
Bill Wolf, who created the new Babylon Restaurant Committee and owns two dining establishments in the Village supported the move. He noted the tight parking situation and expressed the opinion that there are too many restaurants in Babylon Village now.
The are over fifty listings in the Home In Babylon’s dining guide and directory.
Mayor Scordino believes that having a more varied selection of businesses, including new retail, is important to the health of the Village’s downtown area. Not everyone agrees.
A couple of new retail establishments have opened in the time since the moratorium was imposed, but the site which formerly housed Lo-Man Outdoor Store remains unoccupied.
“We have not had a single non-food-and-beverage retailer willing to take the space in over two years”, said Richard Friedman, former owner of the store, in a letter to the board.
The question remains whether a significant retail presence is possible in Babylon Village, given the high rents, parking issues and the increasing amount of retail sales shifting to Amazon and other online sellers.
A previous version of this story included a quote from Babylon Village Chamber of Commerce President Jacqueline DiDonato that was sourced from a Newsday article. We have been informed that this is a misquote and it has been removed.
Home in Babylon regrets the error.