The Friends of Dag Hammarskjold Plaza are filing a suit against the New York City Parks Department over the selection of the Original Milkshake Company for a concession in Dag Hammarskjold Park, on 47th Street between First and Second avenues. Longtime concessionaire Patio Cafe was passed over for the upstart milkshack company.
The F.D.H. allege that the Parks Department “operated in an arbitrary and capricious manner in awarding the contract, and that the bid selection process was tainted, suggesting cronyism or favoritism.” Additionally, the F.D.H. allege that the milkshake company “has little operating experience, no experience as a city concessionaire, a proposed capital investment lacking detail and support, unprofessional submitted designs, inadequate financial capability to meet its own stated capital needs.” Also, the F.D.H. say that the Milkshake Co.’s projections of $600,000 in sales for its first year of operations is triple what the company’s now-closed store on St. Marks brought in–a very optimistic projection considering its past operating history. Additionally, the F.D.H. say that the Milkshake Co. failed to follow the filing rules for the R.F.P. (request for proposals).
The lawsuit, which is of the Article 78 variety–permitting a court review to determine if an error of law happened or a decision was arbitrary, capricious or an abuse of discretion–is scheduled to go before the New York State Supreme Court tomorrow. AThe F.D.H. count the Turtle Bay Association, Community Board 6, Assembly member Jonathon Bing, Representative Carolyn Maloney and Council member Dan Garodnick as its allies in this fight.
(See previous coverage here.)