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- Lucy, 25, graphic designer: "I mean, it's already becoming like Manhattan. They're opening a Whole Foods around the corner. And a J. Crew."
- Brett, 26, photographer: "It bums me out."
- Ashley, 27, fashion designer: "The neighborhood is already changing so much, I think it's inevitable. I don’t like it, it's a bad taste, but it's going to be hugely successful."
- Cathrine, age: "perfectly marinated," fashion photographer: "It's a good business move for them, but it's sad for the neighborhood. It's sad for the mom-and-pop shops. I've been here a long time, and I've seen the neighborhood change."
- Steven, 29, tattoo artist: "I personally hate Urban Outfitters. I don’t really care for either of those stores." Will it be successful? "Of course, because of all the pretentious hipsters."
- Guy, 25, painter: "I think it's a lot more authentic (in Williamsburg) than what Urban Outfitters would do to it. Real people have invested real savings here. But I guess for some people, the shoe fits."
- Leila, 20, student: "I think it's just that one-of-a-kind mentality, people have that issue here. I personally don't mind (Urban Outfitters) as long as I can find something that I like."
- Emily, 24, student: "I grew up in New York, so it's been cool to see Williamsburg become what Greenwich Village used to be. But I don't think that this neighborhood really needs Urban Outfitters, it's getting so commercial already."
- Zora, 33, teacher: "I'm anti. It's gentrification. I think cities across the country are in crisis, and this is not where we should be spending our money."
- Jason, 39, producer/director: "I think the first people who moved here—you know, the artists—they won't like it. But the people moving here now, they'll have fun."
- Rosie, 21, blog assistant: "I think Williamsburg already has a lot of small boutiques and stuff. I don’t like Urban Outfitters, so I probably won’t shop there.”
- Wells, 31, student: "I'm neutral. I think Williamsburg can absorb the market. We have lots of places to buy cheap, vintage cool clothes, and lots of places to get new, expensive cool clothes, but nowhere to get stuff that’s new and cheap and looks cool."
Earlier this morning, Crain's reported that Urban Outfitters and sister-company Anthropologie are gearing up to invade Williamsburg. So we hopped on the L train and polled passerby on Bedford Avenue to get their reactions. As with those J. Crew rumors, responses were mixed—but generally, nobody seems thrilled. See their opinions in the gallery above.—Becca Endicott
· Anthropologie, Urban Outfitters, and More to Invade W'Burg [Racked NY]
· Williamsburg Pedestrians Have Mixed Feelings on J. Crew [Racked NY]
· Why Some Williamsburg Locals Aren't Liking the Flea Relocating [Racked NY]