The East Lansing Planning Commission members met June 12 to discuss the application for approval of a new site-plan and special use permit from PORTAW, Inc. which currently owns Harper’s Restaurant and Brewpub and P.T. O’Malley’s Bar and Grill.
In addition, the company proposed to extend the space by adding 78 square feet to accommodate the new restaurant with more space for seating and dancing.
“It (P.T. O’Malley’s) had moved down to 210 Abbot, specifically for one reason and one reason only, and that was because of the capacity issue,” said Pat Riley president of PORTAW, inc.
Riley also explains that the relocation is due to the much needed kitchen space. The location with a larger kitchen means having a new menu that includes appetizers, salads and sandwiches.
“If anyone has been either in the very original or the current location of P.T. O’Malley’s, it is a cooking area not a kitchen,” said Riley.
Another concern from the current location is that he means of recycling is not within their capabilities. In the city of East Lansing, recycling services are only available in residential areas rather than businesses. According to Riley, the company’s other site, Harper’s, had recycled over 116,000 bottles in the past year alone. This new location for P.T. O’Malley’s includes a larger space behind the building which could be used for recycling distribution.
Concerns of affecting the business of Black Cat had been brought up from Josh Martinez, the general manager who had represented the restaurant on behalf of the owner.
“My boss’ concerns was how do we keep going how we are with the changes that are going on around us,” said Martinez.
Black Cat Bistro is an American dish restaurant that is known for its sophisticated menu and according to Martinez, is not another student destination site. Martinez addressed the concerns with noise issues with the previous Menna’s Joint and loitering of students that could develop in the future from this new relocation.
After hearing the two parties proposals and concerns, the commissioners had ultimately came to the conclusion that there needed to be more thought before making a decision. This proposal was pushed further and the decision of the application would be decided on the next meeting.