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Some Warwick residents worry planned expansion of eatery will bring crowds and noise

Owner wants to add banquet room, bar area and parking in neighborhood’s vacant property

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WARWICK — Signs that read "no bar next door" and "no bars in backyard" line the front yards of houses on Elm Street as some residents are protesting the expansion of Yesterdays restaurant being built in a lot near their home.

John Christison has owned Yesterdays restaurant on 29 Main St. for 32 years. Due to limited street parking and because he says he's "outgrown the space," he wants to expand.

"I have an extremely loyal customer base, local and tourist, and I need more room to expand my business," Christison says. His goal for the new property is to have a banquet room, dining and bar area, bathrooms, covered porch and a patio, to increase the capacity and have more spots in a parking lot. There's just one problem: Many in the community are against the expansion location.

The location of the expansion is near houses and the homeowners have some reservations.

"It's going to be very noisy, there is going to be a lot of people, and then you are getting an element of intoxicated people coming up through all our backyards,” says Debra Bianco.

"There will be no live entertainment outside, it will not be a beer garden like what some of the neighbors are saying. It‘s a zoned eating and drinking establishment. It's been zoned that forever. The legal setback is 10 feet. I’m 56 on one side and 46 on another."

Christison says some residents have been using the vacant lot for their own use and do not want to lose the property they have been using.

"They’ve encroached the property; it’s their dumping grounds and they’ve put various, not garbage, but branches, leaf clippings, trees, various land debris," Christison says.

Now it's up to the village to decide on the fate of the expansion. There will be a public hearing on Thursday at Warwick Town Hall at 7:30 p.m. concerning the expansion.

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