The Madison city government is considering a proposition that would freeze the number of liquor licenses available downtown. This would prevent new bars from opening, and there would be restrictions on expansion of existing bars.
I wholeheartedly endorse this proposal. Downtown Madison is overrun with drunkenness. I’m not talking zombie-apocalypse overrun or anything, and I’m not referring to the Club Majestic issues. There’s just a whole lot of drunks out at night, and not much else.
Stopping expansion of bars downtown, and eventually reducing it, will lead to a more varied state street area, and make it a more lucrative attraction for students and others alike. As-is, there’s pretty no reason to go downtown except to drink. We need more dry entertainment alternatives. Like another downtown mainstream movie theater (even if it serves beer like University Square used to , its far better than a bar for downtown variety, and is a wonderful attraction for students.)
Of course, people will lambast this as ‘anti-business.’ Its nothing of the sort: its against a certain kind of business, and we’ll turn into a city with different businesses. Change is good. This is progress. The field will be more competitive for new bar owners; they’ll have to obtain their licenses from the hands of those who have them and not the government; this should foster some competiton and bring out the best and the brightest entrepreneurs… isn’t that what you “pro-business” people want?
We the people of Madison have a chance to decide what we want our city to be. I think it’s getting better.