Midtown’s Restaurant Row is getting a little glitz and glam

City coughs up $150K to draw bigger crowds with lights, kiosks
August 02, 2013 09:00AM

The Theater District is betting that lights and a little paint will bring more hungry arts patrons to its Restaurant Row for a bite to eat, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Small lights running on solar power and illuminated metal kiosks will line the Eighth and Ninth avenues near 46th Street to brighten the 31-restaurant stretch at night. In another initiative, signs will be painted on the sides of buildings to Promote The Street. Tim Tompkins, president of the business improvement district the Times Square Alliance, told the Journal the goal is to receive approvals for the signs within the next year.

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer’s office is footing the $150,000 bill for the kiosks and lights. The Times Square Alliance will pay for the signs.

The city’s decisions over the years to shut traffic lanes on Broadway and Seventh Avenue and to add bike lanes have hampered access, some contend.

“Clients complain about it,” said Laura Maioglio, owner of Barbetta, told the Journal. “There are fewer and fewer lanes for traffic.”

In May, two distressed buildings on the Row distressed buildings were up for an all-cash auction, as previously reported. [WSJ]Mark Maurer