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Downtown No Longer Considered for Possible Tattoo Studio

The Peekskill City Council said they will not consider lifting the tattoo ban in the downtown zone.

The Peekskill City Council has discussed potentially lifting the ban on tattoo studios in the city for more than a year, but has not determined which zone would be most appropriate for such a business.

At last night's City Council work session the mayor and council decided that the following zones would not be considered for a tattoo studio:

  • Residential Zones
  • Downtown Business District Zone
  • Commercial Zones with a significant mix of Residential use
  • Planned Commercial Development Zone

The Council directed the staff to consider the following zones:

  • Industrial Zones
  • Manufacturing/Industrial Zones
  • Commercial (Shopping Center) Zones

These three zones include the area along Central Avenue and the waterfront, Beach and other shopping centers, the Hat Factory area, among others. See attached map. The areas in blue, purple and yellow are where the city may allow a tattoo studio.

While all council members and the mayor were supportive of bringing a tattoo studio back to the city, they had mixed opinions on where it should go. Allowing a tattoo studio in the city means the Council will have to approve a zoning change.

“The challenge becomes once you prohibit something and (want to bring it back) people live in the area and they have a lot of voice,” Mayor Mary Foster said, referring to the fact that downtown is a mixed commercial and residential area and some residents have the lift on the tattoo ban.

Councilman Darren Rigger emphasized what he saw as a business owner’s perspective that the downtown would be most attractive place to open a studio. Councilwoman Kathleen Talbot, while she said she would never get a tattoo herself, emphasized that tattoo art is not seen the same way as it was when she was younger and that the downtown seemed like a good location for a studio.

“This is considered art these days not like when I was a kid and motorcycle guys would line up for tattoos. Everybody seems to have a tattoo except for me…I think it should be someplace where it can be seen,” Talbot said.

The officials ultimately directed staff to consider the industrial, manufacturing and commercial areas and possibly look into splitting up the outlying downtown area or waterfront area zoning to come up with a location with which everyone would feel comfortable.

Patrick Conlon, the Peekskill tattoo artist who hopes to open a studio, has said that and not in industrial or manufacturing parts of the city.

The council will hold a public hearing on tattoo studio zoning in coming weeks.

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Where do you think a tattoo studio should go? Take our poll and discuss in the comments! 

John Q. Public March 03, 2012 at 02:28 AM
What authority gives the City to regulate tatoo parlors? Why not get rid of alleged locksmiths at 810 South Street, and all dry cleaners on South Street? Is the issue this business didn't give Foster enough payola?
Carol Jencks March 04, 2012 at 10:13 PM
I am following this story on facebook and it is just unbelievable to me that this is happening in New York. I live in Abilene,Texas, a very conservative town that is called the "buckle" of the Bible Belt. We have several very nice Tattoo Studios in our downtown area and I have not heard of a single problem that this has caused. Wish I could be there to offer my support in person.
John Q. Public March 04, 2012 at 11:30 PM
Foster and Claxton are not credible on this issue. There was huge public support for Target. They killed it. There was huge public support for Downtown redevelopment. They killed it. There was huge support for the Waterfront. They killed it. There was huge public support for making Centennial Hose a historic place. They destroyed it through inaction. Someone has branded them the Party of No which is quite right. They have said No to fiscal responsibility and our City is teetering on the bridge of insolvency. They have said no to preserving the City's unreserved fund balance. They have said No to protecting private property rights. The only thing they've supported is destroying morale in City Hall, encouraging retaliation for anyone who speaks out for what is right, and making taxpayers pay to feed them as they sit at the helm of the Titantic they have created, awaiting their ultimate goal, the decimation of Peekskill's middle class who pays the bills.
Patty Villanova March 05, 2012 at 02:41 AM
JQP is right on the money-- the Powers that Be (of both parties) want nothing more than to encourage debt, dependency and decay for our once fair city. Look around and ask- why is it that Peekskill continues to take one step forward and 3 steps back when our neighbors to the north, Cold Spring and Beacon, are thriving? Why has our magnificent downtown been allowed to turn into a landscape that seems more like something you'd see in a Third World country? There is no mystery as to why there's virtually no retail left- just look at the foot traffic, the people who are walking by our stores on a daily basis. Except for tourists and out of towners, most of these people have little or no disposable income; most of them are on some kind of public assistance and are not interested in shopping or dining in town. The middle and upper middle class residents do not shop in Peekskill and why should they-- you can get everything you want over on Route 6 without having to worry about getting a parking ticket. I believe that this has all been deliberate and it didn't just start with Foster and Testa- it's been going on for quite some time. There's more Federal and state money for the corrupto-crats servicing the needs of the poor and downtrodden than will ever be generated by legitimate businesses.
Ian March 23, 2012 at 02:23 AM
It is a shame Patrick was not able to open a tattoo parlor. He's a great guy and very community-minded.

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