Belmont Neighbors: “Stop Peeing On My Front Steps”
Yearnin’ for some learnin’, we at the paper set out one day last week to find ourselves a hard-hittin’ newspaper. When we couldn’t find an issue of The Ram ANYWHERE on campus, we begrudgingly headed to the nearest bodega to find an issue of the New York Daily News, our fallback option.
Thank god for fallback options.
To our surprise, buried deep within the pages of our newly acquired rag, we stumbled upon an informative little piece about our very own neighborhood. Apparently, so says “New York’s Hometown Newspaper,” this whole get-hammered-and-rail-lines-and-scream-and-puke-and-pee-in-the-streets-until-4-a.m.-four- nights-a-week thing that we’re all so fond of isn’t really working out for the people who live in the Belmont neighborhood for periods of time longer than four years.
“We feel we’re oversaturated with bars,” said Ivine Galarza, district manager of the community board that represents Belmont. “They are open until 4 a.m., they don’t care who they serve, and they have other types of illegal activities.”
As a result, the article goes on to say, Community Board 6 passed a unanimous motion earlier this month to look into the possibility of imposing a moratorium on new liquor licenses. In other words, the student body has been so ludicrous (and in such numbers) this September that local residents are literally asking that another bar never be opened again in the area.
While the short-term implications of a ban on new liquor licenses are admittedly minimal, the situation itself once again raises the type of questions that continue to loom ever more ominously over the Jesuit University of New York.
As Joe McShane leads us ever onward toward the glory of 2016 and beyond, can we peacefully co-exist with our neighbors? Perhaps not, especially if any more of us decide to show up. In the past few years alone, the number of Fordham students living directly off-campus has increased significantly, as evidenced by the dramatic rate of construction of those ubiquitous white brick prison-like off-campus dormitories. The school itself is in the process of building more Res-Life housing off-campus, and as we all can see (and hear), Campbell Hall is well on its way to bringing a few hundred more eager suburbanites to our outer-boro paradise (Starbucks and all). As the student population increases, so too does the chance for problems. More parties, more noise complaints, more urine in the gutters, more fights, more smashed bottles, more drunken crowds standing at the Tri-Bar with nothing to do and lots of booze to do it with. No, we think it’s safe to say the actions of Community Board 6 will not be the last organized protest against the ever-rising number of boozed-up bros hitting the streets of the Bronx.
But we here at the paper think that it would be pretty hypocritical of us if we got preachy about the way you all choose to spend your Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday nights; more often than not, we’re out there with you. We’d love to offer up a solution that would please everyone, but to be perfectly honest, we don’t really think one exists. College students are not going to stop drinking to excess, especially when the alcohol policies of Fordham encourage students not to stop drinking, but rather to simply do so off-campus. And the people who try to live their lives in the Belmont area – especially those who have been here long enough to remember a time when far fewer students lived in the neighborhood – are going to grow angrier with each passing year. As this university continues to expand, it is going to continue to face more and more big-school problems. The situation with Community Board 6 has made clear that sustained and serious tension with the neighboring community is almost certainly going to be one of those problems for years to come.
Check out the Daily News article: