Landlord says bar owner's lease prohibits gay bar

Joe Torres has the story from Greenpoint.
April 21, 2014 8:56:16 PM PDT
Nestled right on the corner of Franklin Street and Greenpoint Avenue is Lulu's, a bar where $5 gets you a beer and a pizza. However, despite the nice price and the prime location, the bar owner says he is losing money.

So John McGillon, who talked to Eyewitness News via FaceTime from Ireland where he is attending a funeral, told us he has a plan to get his business back in the black ? make it a gay bar.

"It's a better business to run, the people are more friendly, they're more open, you have to do less services for them," says McGillon.

McGillon faces one Lu-lu of a hurdle. His lease prohibits him from operating a gay bar, and his landlord, who never returned calls for comment, isn't budging.

"I think he has a right to open as a gay bar, says bar patron Mike Kiselow, "This area is turning a little gay, so why not?"

McGillon believes his gay bar would generate at least 25% more business than his current bar.

"It would be gay friendly, and we would have strictly gay people ? gay bartenders, gay magazines and it would change overnight," he says, "in a week's time, it would be gay."

The bar owner plans to take his case to court. While he has not yet reached out to city council, members or local lawmakers for help, he says if he has to, he will.