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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of New York

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Files And Settles Lawsuit Against Owners And Operators Of Carmine’s Restaurants For Violations Of The Americans With Disabilities Act

Owners Agree To Remedy Numerous Violations Of The ADA And Pay $10,000 Penalty

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today the filing and settlement of a lawsuit against the owners and operators of the two Manhattan locations of the popular Carmine’s restaurant chain for violations of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 (“ADA”). The defendant owners and operators of the Carmine’s Restaurants and owners of the buildings in which the Carmine’s Restaurants are located are GREYSTONE OWNER LLC, CARMINE’S BROADWAY FEAST INC., PARAMOUNT LEASEHOLD L.P., LITTLE FISH CORP., and THE ALICART RESTAURANT GROUP. The settlement, in the form of a consent decree, was docketed today, November 12, 2013 and approved Friday November 8, 2013 by U.S. District Judge Kimba M. Wood.

The lawsuit was brought as part of the Manhattan Restaurants ADA Compliance Initiative, announced in September 2011. As part of the initiative, the U.S. Attorney’s Office is reviewing and evaluating the ADA compliance of the “most popular” restaurants in Manhattan as designated by the 2011 Zagat Guide. Pursuant to the initiative, the U.S. Attorney’s Office resolved its lawsuit against three ROSA MEXICANO locations by Consent Decree entered on January 30, 2013.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “As this suit and settlement demonstrate, we remain committed to ensuring that the owners and operators of New York City’s restaurants and cultural venues comply with the ADA.”

According to the Complaint and Consent Decree filed in Manhattan federal court:

The U.S. Attorney’s Office identified numerous violations of the ADA at each of Carmine’s Manhattan locations: 2450 Broadway (“Carmine’s Upper West Side”) and 200 West 44th Street (“Carmine’s Theater District”). Most significantly, Carmine’s Upper West Side lacks an accessible main entrance, its “alternate entrance” is also non-compliant in several respects, and it lacks an accessible restroom. The accessible restrooms in Carmine’s Theater District are also non-compliant in multiple respects.

The Consent Decree requires the restaurants to improve the accessibility of their entrances, waiting areas, bar areas, dining areas, restrooms, coat checks, and hostess stations. The Consent Decree provides for renovations to the main and alternate entrances and construction of an accessible restroom at Carmine’s Upper West Side, and alterations to the restrooms at Carmine’s Theater District. In addition, the owners and operators of the restaurants will pay a $10,000 civil penalty to the United States.

Since President George H.W. Bush signed the ADA into law in 1990, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York has taken a leading role in bringing numerous New York City institutions into compliance with the ADA regulations. They include Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, the Metropolitan Opera, Yankee Stadium, Madison Square Garden, the Apollo Theater, the Puck Building, the Shubert Theaters, the Rainbow Room, and Radio City Music Hall.

Mr. Bharara thanked the Disability Rights Section of the Department of Justice, in particular its architectural staff, for their assistance in this matter.

The Restaurants Initiative is being handled by the Office’s Civil Rights Unit. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Amy A. Barcelo, Christopher Connolly, and Cristine Irvin Phillips are in charge of the Initiative.

To file a complaint alleging that a restaurant or any other place of public accommodation within the Southern District of New York is not accessible to persons with disabilities, use the Civil Rights Complaint Form available on the United States Attorney’s Office’s website, www.usdoj.gov/usao/nys. Complaints should be sent to:

U.S. Attorney’s Office, Southern District of New York

86 Chambers Street, 3rd Floor

New York, New York, 10007

Attention: Chief, Civil Rights Unit

U.S. v. Greystone Owners, LLC, et al. Complaint
U.S. v. Greystone Owners, LLC, et al. Executed Consent Decree 2013.11.8

Press Release Number: 
13-344
Updated May 18, 2015