First the Upper East Siders were ranting about sidewalk congestion, and now the Upper West Side is joining in on the complaint chorus. A writer for West Side Spirit has a bone to pick with enclosed sidewalk cafés; because what else are you going to get worked up about these days? La la la, there are really no other problems except dining establishments jutting out on to public property. Really, nothing.
Citizen Uptown declares that not only are abandoned outdoor cafés an eyesore (saying they "not only look messy and run down but some of them also appear downright gaudy"), but the papered up windows are even more so, and the illegal ads that cover those up are even more so. There's no solution! Will no one do anything about these "unused, enclosed structure that encroach on public property?" Council Member Gale Brewer's office says: “We are trying to find a balance in helping the building owner to find a new tenant to use that space for a restaurant. We don’t want them tearing them down and bringing them back up in four months. That doesn’t help anybody.”
As for the illegal ads being placed on the abandoned storefronts, this sort of thing has been happening all over the city. A spokesperson from the Department of Buildings said the advertising "is not permitted in this district and that the agency is investigating the illegal ads." Until action is taken and justice is served, you'll have to avert your eyes from (or shake your fist at) all of these unsightly sidewalk-encroaching messes when your just trying to enjoy a nice walk to the Chase bank and Duane Reade.