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Yesterday, Cooper Union officially told its struggling tenant, the much-loved St. Mark's Bookshop, that it won't be granting them a break on the rent. St. Mark's currently pays $20,000 a month for its East Village location, at the corner of E. 9th Street and Third Avenue. For the past two months, it's been trying to get Cooper Union to reduce the rent by $5000, waging a campaign that included a petition (now nearly 44,000 signatures strong) and a visit by Michael Moore. But apparently Cooper Union wasn't swayed.
Bob Contant, the store's co-owner, told Publisher's Weekly that the school wants to rent the space for twice what the bookshop is currently paying. As Jeremiah points out over on Vanishing New York, that pretty much rules out the chances that anything but a chain will move in. He's started a new petition promising a boycott of whatever new business replaces St. Mark's. Looks like we might have to wait a while to find out what that business might be, though—St. Mark's actually has seven years left on its lease before it has to vacate the space.
· St. Mark's Bookshop Gets Rejection from Landlord, Looks Ahead [PW]
· Say No Back to Cooper [VNY]
· All St. Mark's Bookshop coverage [Racked NY]