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Chronicling All the Empty Storefronts in a Single Neighborhood Is Exhausting

Tribeca Citizen

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Ever walked a city block and thought, "Gee, there's a whole lot of empty stores here?" You're not alone (and probably not just walking around the East Village, either). The local blogger behind Tribeca Citizen undertook the unknowingly gargantuan task of noting every single empty storefront in his neighborhood and found exactly one hundred of them.

"I would never have guessed there were that many—only by cataloging them can you really see the scope of what's happening," he wrote. "The consensus from everyone I speak with seems to be that owners, seeing the direction the neighborhood has been going in, are willing to wait for a tenant who'll pay for the privilege of being here." In other words, a tenant willing to pay increasing retail rents is more important than stocking a neighborhood with vibrant businesses.

And unfortunately, the blogger doesn't see things looking up in his pocket of the city. "There's an obscene amount of retail coming online to the south—at Brookfield Place, the World Trade Center, the South Street Seaport, the Fulton Center, 28 Liberty...That's also where chains are going to want to be, because tourists are there, too; Tribeca, I'd theorize, then gets left to the independent businesses. Of which there are fewer and fewer."

Ever counted the number of empty storefronts in your neck of the woods? Tell us about it in the comments section below.