6/24: Preserving Local, Independent Retail Roundtable

FRZ Final 5.27.15-1

In June 2015 the East Village Community Coalition released Preserving Local, Independent Retail: Recommendations for Formula Retail Zoning in the East Village, an analysis of the the growing presence of chain stores in the lower Manhattan neighborhood. These stores are changing the landscape of the neighborhood by altering the shopping choices from independent to mass-market retailers.

Three possible methods of formula retail zoning are proposed within the report. These options — aimed at informing decisions by East Village policy makers — have been crafted using case studies, legal suggestions and pre-existing zoning frameworks from other parts of the country. Join us to learn more about the proposals and ask questions about efforts to block the proliferation of chain stores in New York State and beyond.

The Preserving Local, Independent Retail Roundtable is presented as part of our Get Local! campaign launched in 2006 to promote a diverse retail mix of independent stores that reflect the neighborhood’s character and serve its population.

RSVP

Light refreshments will be provided.

REPORT: Preserving Local, Independent Retail

The EVCC announces the release of Preserving Local Independent Retail: Recommendations for Formula Retail Zoning in the East Village.

The East Village is known for its colorful history of immigration, art, music, community advocacy and grassroots movements. Over the years the community has been home to a variety of artists, writers, and political activists — each group playing a significant role in shaping the neighborhood and creating the unique place that exists today. Today the East Village is one of New York’s most diverse neighborhoods, made up of residents from a variety of backgrounds and of various economic means.

Retail in the East Village has predominantly been made up of small, independent, local businesses. The small storefronts found throughout the neighborhood have provided affordable, low-risk opportunities for small business owners and local entrepreneurs. Today in the East Village a shift can be seen from independent stores to chains or franchises as well as from small storefronts to those with larger footprints. These stores are changing the landscape of the neighborhood by altering the shopping choices from independent to mass-market retailers. The expansion of these chains creates even more challenges for local, independent retailers.

Like many in other municipalities, the EVCC has determined that the presence of chain businesses can be detrimental to community character and local economies. Preserving Local, Independent Retail is presented as part of our Get Local! campaign launched in 2006 to promote a diverse retail mix of independent stores that reflect the neighborhood’s character and serve its population. Three possible methods of formula retail restriction zoning are proposed within the report. These options — aimed at informing decisions by East Village policy makers — have been crafted using case studies, legal suggestions and pre-existing zoning frameworks from other parts of the country.

As trends of gentrification and homogenization continue in New York, with respect to both the built environment and retail landscape, a timely solution is needed to preserve the individuality of the city’s neighborhoods. Placing restrictions on formula retail establishments via zoning amendments provides a path to preserving the rapidly changing East Village. Creating an East Village Special District using our framework will emphasize the importance and uniqueness of the community. Contact us to learn how you can help us create the Special Retail District the East Village needs.

Download your copy of the Preserving Local, Independent Retail Report

6/16: East Village Tuesdays

East Village Tuesdays: Networking Event
Cafe Silan, 280 East 10th Street
June 16th, 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Step in to a friendly neighborhood cafe and network with neighbors and business owners in the area. Small bites and light refreshments will be served.

RSVP

 

About East Village Tuesdays
The East Village Tuesdays meetup series is designed to bring together residents of the East Village in the hope that socializing, sharing and supporting one another will lead to a stronger, more informed community.  Our East Village Tuesdays series is presented by the East Village Community Coalition’s Host Committee, dedicated to creating enjoyable and informative events throughout the community on behalf of the EVCC.

Contact the East Village Community Coalition (EVCC) Host Committee with questions via HostCommittee@evccnyc.org

East Village Consumer Survey Results

In the fall of 2014 the EVCC enlisted the help of the JGSC Group to conduct the East Village Consumer Survey as a way to better understand why people visit the East Village. The slideshow highlights key findings from the survey.

[pdf-embedder url=”http://evccnyc.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/EV-Consumer-Survey-Results-Slideshow.pdf”]

 

FINDINGS:

  • We learned that the most important initiatives are:
    • Retain existing businesses
    • Attract independent stores and boutiques.
    • The least desired initiative is to attract national retailers. Fewer than 2 percent of all respondents feel this is very important.
  • Respondents expressed a low level of satisfaction cleanliness and litter control (22%). This response was consistent among residents (regardless of their length of residency) and non-residents.
  • Among all respondents the most mentioned reason for not visiting more often is that merchandise prices are too high (46%).
  • Among all of the goods and services offered respondents identified 7 categories that were selected most frequently as reason they would visit more often:
    • Independent retail stores and books were selected by two-thirds of all respondents.
    • Recorded music, specialty foods, crafts and hobbies, housewares, and grocery store were selected by one-half of all respondents.
    • Noticeably absent from the preferred selections were clothing and accessories stores, drinking establishments (9%), and national retail stores (5%).
  • The most valuable source of information is the East Village blog site EVgrieve.com, which was described as very valuable by 71 percent of all responses.

Retail Diversity in the East Village

Over the course of three days in August 2014, EVCC staff and volunteers walked every block of the East Village in an effort to catalog the ground floor use of each building in the community. The data provides a snapshot of the retail landscape in the East Village from summer 2014.

Overview

The East Village has 1750 total storefronts. The data shows concentrations of retail and services along the avenues, St. Marks Place, E. 9th and 4th Streets. The retail and service options disperse east of Tompkins Square Park.

All Primary with Vacancy

 

Drinking Establishments + Food Service

In total Drinking Establishments and Food Services make up 35.8% of all East Village storefronts

Food and Drink[table id=2 /]

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Retail

There are 362 retail stores in the East Village. The highest concentrations are along 1st and 2nd Avenues, as well as East 7th and 9th Streets and St. Marks Place.

Retail

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Local Services

There are 249 local service establishments in the East Village. They are fairly well spread through the district; however, a decline in offerings can be seen in the eastern part of the district.

Local Services

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Chains

There are 63 chain store establishments in the East Village. The majority of these are located on Third, Second, and First Avenues as well as 14th St.

  • Food service establishments (Starbucks, Subway, etc.) account for 35% of the chain stores within the East Village
  • Banks account for 21% of the chain stores within the East Village

Chain StoresVacancies

At the time of the survey there were 196 storefront vacancies within the East Village, or an 11% vacancy rate.

Vacancies

The full presentation of the data can be seen here. [pdf-embedder url=”http://evccnyc.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/CB-3-Retail-Diversity-Presentation.pdf”]

 

 

 

 

 

REPORT: Anticipating and Adapting to Community Changes in the East Village

Capstone_img

In 2015, an NYU Wagner School Capstone team made projections on the near future of the East Village. After spending a year analyzing trends, policy, and plans, the students prepared a report and presentation on the projected effects of change on residents and the neighborhood’s character.

Anticipating and Adapting to Community Changes in the East Village

NYU Wagner Capstone Team: Presentation for EVCC

The East Village is experiencing rapid changes in housing stock, resident demographics, retail offerings and developments. With IBM leasing at Cooper Square and many buildings changing hands, we see potential for significant transformations in the area. In order to have an informed and prepared community, it is important that all influencing factors and trends be identified to prepare community groups, elected officials and residents who may work to mitigate projected effects. Real estate trends, population shifts, existing and proposed policies, planned developments, the condition of cultural resources are all considered in helping to predict what we can expect in the coming years in the area east of Tompkins Square Park.