Tonawanda News — The City of Tonawanda council approved the temporary closing Tuesday of a portion of Young Street near Smoke on the Water to provide more parking for the restaurant on a trial basis.
“We have wanted to abandon this property for a number of years,” Council President Carl Zeisz said. “This will allow us to take away an additional turn and an added light.”
The portion of the road is presently dedicated for vehicles traveling north on Young Street and making a right onto Delaware Street. The city will temporarily close the section to observe how traffic flows before officially transferring the land, which is adjacent to the restaurant’s current parking lot.
If the city decides to go ahead with the change, the land will be provided to the owners of the restaurant through an easement. The business will be able to use the property for parking, but will not be allowed to build on the land.
“They approached us, and we had a possible solution for them,” Zeisz said.
Zeisz also said Tuesday that the council does not plan on replacing former First Ward Councilwoman Heather Little, who stepped down from her seat last month.
“We have three meetings before the election,” Zeisz said. “There is no appropriate way to choose who would replace her.”
Zeisz said the candidate who wins the First Ward seat will assume the position after election day and will serve out Little’s term for the rest of the year.
His comments came after resident Don Holler spoke at the meeting and argued that the council should choose a replacement. Holler said the council shouldn’t make any significant decisions — such as the approval of the Little League Drive housing contract with Natale — without a First Ward representative on the council to vote.
“That person’s opinion may affect the rest of the body’s vote during a discussion of the pros and cons,” Holler said.