The city wants garment manufacturers to move to Brooklyn. But is it too far?

A new survey shows fashion companies don't want to relocate

Aug.August 14, 2017 08:00 AM

Clockwise from left: Bush Terminal, the Garment District and the Brooklyn Army Terminal

Despite the lure of cheap rents, the fashion industry isn’t keen on relocating to Sunset Park.

A new survey by the Municipal Art Society shows that garment manufacturers don’t want to move from the Garment District in Manhattan to Brooklyn, despite a push from the city to do so, the Wall Street Journal reported. In March, New York City Economic Development Corp. proposed changes to the district’s zoning that will do away with a 1987 restriction aimed at protecting garment manufacturers. Without the restriction, landlords in the Garment District will have an easier time converting their buildings into office space. At the same time, the city is offering rent and other incentives for manufacturers to move to Sunset Park.

To move to Brooklyn would increase commute times by 45 minutes or more for 83 percent of workers, the survey found. Sixty-five percent of customers also indicated that they probably wouldn’t make the trek out to Sunset Park to visit these companies if they moved. Still, the Real Estate Board of New York and the neighborhood’s business improvement district argue that the 30-year-old zoning protection isn’t effective.

“In this case, you essentially had a restriction arbitrarily imposed on this neighborhood that suppressed rents and thus tax revenues for 30 years,” said Barbara Blair, president of the Garment District Alliance. [WSJ]Kathryn Brenzel 

Related Articles

Judge Janet DiFiore and Judge Rowan Wilson (Credit: iStock, New York State Courts)

High court decision has tenants stewing, landlords oohing

Sharif El-Gamal (Photo by Desiree Navarro/WireImage)

WATCH: Developer Sharif El-Gamal has Covid-19. But he’s one of the lucky ones

Knotel CEO Amol Sarva 

Another huge round of layoffs for Knotel

Miki Naftali, Steven Witkoff and Ryan Freedman

TRD Talks: How developers are contending with coronavirus

Governor Andrew Cuomo (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images; iStock)

Cuomo’s foreclosure, mortgage moratorium has no teeth

From left: Realogy's Ryan Schneider, Cushman & Wakefield's Brett White and Newmark Knight Frank's Barry Gosin (Credit: iStock)

Brokerage stocks plunge amid market turmoil

Mayor Bill de Blasio halted ULURP, stalling projects like 960 Franklin Avenue, Rikers Island and Industry City 

These projects could be held up by New York’s rezoning freeze

Eric Garcetti orders a moratorium on LA commercial evictions (Photo credit: iStock photo)

LA mayor orders a moratorium on commercial evictions