Former Limelight club spot may become permanent retail mall

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The site of a former Chelsea nightclub, Limelight, which had been a 19th-century Episcopal church and, most recently a makeshift flea market, may soon become a permanent retail mall. On Oct. 20, the Landmarks Preservation Commission will weigh a proposal by the operators of 656 Sixth Avenue, who want to bring dozens of boutiques and restaurants to a site that has historically been a source of rowdiness and neighborhood complaints. More than 40 leasing deals are in negotiation, and signed tenants include a candy shop called It’s Sugar, Hunter Boots, a rainboots store, and Caswell Massey, which specializes in soaps. Though community board approval is not necessary for the project to move forward (a Landmarks Commission vote will ultimately decide its fate), the board expressed skepticism about the project in a September hearing. [Crain’s]

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