City Policy Undermines a MerchantCity Policy Undermines a Merchant



Today, I passed by my favorite pizza place -Pizza Lounge – and what I saw has me feeling anger and sadness. I love that place. The pizza is fresh and unusual, the staff and owner are so kind and genuinely seem interested in their patrons. The salmon wrap-wow! It is so good! The establishment is clean, modern and fun. A couple of months ago, I was dismayed when I learned they were required to remove the cushions adjacent to the entrance. It was really great for us to come up, sandy from the beach, and sit down outside in that small area, have a soda and eat our lunch. The city required removal of the cushions.


Today, I learned that the city now has required that they remove the indoor seating. Yep, you read that right: no indoor seating, no outdoor seating. What was once a bustling little business now is suffering.


Here’s a game we can all now play: “How long will Pizza Lounge last” game? No lounging at pizza lounge, courtesy of some of our friends at the city. What a despicable thing to do to a relatively new business on a corner that has not been successful since Jamba Juice. The reason? I inquired and was informed it apparently is due to their lack of parking. What? I haven’t done a survey or analyzed the law applicable to this issue but it appears that most restaurants in town do not have dedicated parking.  Further, nearly everyone who patronizes the business rolls in from the beach or mid-shopping stroll. The bottom-line is that we as a community need to support our local businesses. I implore the city and our newly re-elected City Council members to please do something to remedy this issue. Please do not destroy this terrific little business.  Allow the seating to return and then let’s really analyze the rules that led to its removal. Are they necessary? Do they make sense? Is it time to revise them in light of our current economic circumstances? Please join me in supporting Pizza Lounge. They are a business worth keeping.


Molly K. Shipp,

Laguna Beach


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