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  1. Andrew Ding

    Hi Chris/Kim,

    Firstly thank you for this website, what a treasure trove of information.
    I have a question related to usage of a cellar in a multi-use building near Columbia University in Manhattan.

    The CO of the building dating from 1941 has designated the ground floor of this building as ‘Cellar’ – even though more than 1/2 of the space is above curb level with multiple large full size windows flanking two walls of the space. Of interest is that the CO in this case while labeling the space as ‘cellar’ has also labeled the very same space ‘store’.

    I would like to apply for a permit to vent the space to install a commercial kitchen however I’ve been told conflicting information:

    1.Expediter: Told me that unless I can provide evidence of previously filed and approved plans allowing kitchen equipment, no venting permit will be granted, simply because of the ‘cellar’ designation.

    2.Plan Reviewer from DOB archive office: Said that because the CO specifically labeled this space ‘Store’, it automatically falls into the ‘Use Group 6’ category that allows for food service usage and thus, venting is permissible.

    Do you have any insight into this debate?

    Thank you for any light you can shed onto this matter.

    Andrew

    • admin

      A lot going on with your situation. In general, the DOB will likely not contest use If you can find the drawings proving the condition you described.

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