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KARL'S MARINER'S INN v. INCORPORATED VILLAGE NORTHPORT (07/25/63)

SUPREME COURT OF NEW YORK, SPECIAL TERM, SUFFOLK COUNTY 1963.NY.42871 <http://www.versuslaw.com>; 242 N.Y.S.2d 297; 39 Misc. 2d 951 July 25, 1963 KARL'S MARINER'S INN, INC., PLAINTIFF,v.INCORPORATED VILLAGE OF NORTHPORT, DEFENDANT Cahn & Cahn for plaintiff. Richard J. Graff for defendant. John P. Cohalan, Jr., J. Author: Cohalan


John P. Cohalan, Jr., J.

Author: Cohalan

 This is a motion for a temporary injunction incident to an action for a permanent one and for a declaratory judgment fixing the rights of the respective parties.

On July 3, 1962, defendant village enacted the following ordinance, pursuant to subdivision 44 of section 89 of the Village Law:

"Section 11a -- Traffic Infraction

"No person while operating or controlling a motor vehicle shall enter or allow same to enter Bayview Avenue from a point north of the southerly line of James Street and a westerly prolongation thereof". Bayview, a continuation of Woodbine Avenue, runs in a northnorthwest direction roughly parallel with the shore of Northport Harbor. Its over-all length from Main to James Street is about 2,200 feet. It meets the latter at a right angle. Bayview is a concrete road 22 feet in width from curb to curb. James Street, running east and west, is a blacktop, uncurbed highway of a slightly greater width.

On both sides of Bayview there are buildings, mostly residential in nature. By a prior ordinance, still in effect, no motor vehicle may park on the east side of the avenue.

Plaintiff (Karl's) restaurant is situated on the northwest corner of the two highways, but outside the right angle formed by their junction. Its southerly boundary (and entrance) abuts the north side of James Street and is about 25 feet north of the northerly boundary line of Bayview Avenue. Thus, a motor vehicle driven north along Bayview would get to Karl's by going straight across the 25-foot width of James Street, as to which there is no prohibition.

In like manner, a car could be parked on the west side of Bayview Avenue just south of the junction, and its passengers could alight and walk to the restaurant. After their meal they could return, on foot, to the parked car, turn it around and then proceed south on the avenue to Ain Street.

The rub lies in the circumstance that the ordinance proscribes egress by a motor vehicle over the self same route because no motor vehicle may enter upon Bayview Avenue from James Street.

Karl's patrons reach the restaurant by both land and water. With the latter class we are not concerned.

The land patrons, according to plaintiff, come from all over Long Island, including Brooklyn and Queens, and have been accustomed to arrive at and leave the restaurant via Bayview Avenue.

Now, however, if a patron of the plaintiff, in compliance with the ordinance, wished to return to Main Street and Bayview Avenue, he would have to do so by going east for 65/100ths of a mile on James Street, south 54/100ths on Ocean Avenue (a rather winding concrete road) and then west on Main Street 45/100ths to the point of beginning, for a total of 1.64 miles. In this day and age the distance factor is of no great moment to an automobile; the problem, rather, is that posed to a stranger trying to find his way in the nighttime around the circuitous route.

Plaintiff asserts that the ordinance is aimed at it directly, that it is discriminatory and thus unconstitutional. This defendant denies and points out that there are people living on both James Street and Bluff Point Road who are also affected by the ordinance.

Bluff Point Road dead-ends into James Street from the north and passes along the east side of the restaurant. Its southerly terminus is slightly east of the north end of Bayview. Along its length and opening from it are business and residential areas which are not affected by the ordinance as is plaintiff. The business properties would be daytime operations, and such residents as may live in the area would be ...


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