Lowered visibility, reduced foot traffic has vendors folding ahead of Essex Crossing opening

City has turned over promotion efforts of the market over to the Lower East Side Partnership

Rendering of Essex Crossing on the Lower East Side
Rendering of Essex Crossing on the Lower East Side

UPDATED, March 23, 2:42 p.m.: Instead of being a boon for some Essex Street Market vendors, the massive $1 billion redevelopment of The Seward Park Urban Renewal Area Across The Street thus far has been a headache — and some sellers are closing shop.

Four out of 25 vendors at the existing indoor market have shuttered since the city announced Delancey Street Associates would develop the nine-block project three years ago. Delancey Street Associates is a joint venture between BFC Partners, L+M Development Partners and Taconic Investment Partners.

“Foot traffic has taken a nosedive, because everybody in the city thinks it’s already closed or is closing any day now,” Rhonda Kave, owner of Roni-Sue Chocolates, told Crain’s.

In February, Kave closed her stall in the indoor market after eight years, Crain’s reported. Roni-Sue Chocolates now occupies a much larger space on Forsyth Street.

Now the city’s Economic Development Corporation turned control of the markets’ promotion over to the Lower East Side Partnership, Crain’s reported.

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The new Essex Street Market, which is slated to open in 2018, will have space for 45 stalls, according to Crain’s. Current tenants will continue to pay the same rent per square rent they are now while new tenants will pay market rate, Crain’s reported. Delancey Street Associates will cover moving expenses, Crain’s reported.

“Everything we do going forward that’s about the new market will tie in something about the current Essex Street Market,” Rohan Mehra, a principal in the Prusik Group, which handles commercial leasing at Essex Crossing, told Crain’s.

In December, Delancey Street Associates received a $79.5 million financing package from Wells Fargo. Located at 175 Delancey Street, the 1.9 million-square-foot Essex Crossing project will house 100 affordable units for seniors, 20,000 square feet of community space, 26,000 square feet of space for nonprofit use and 50,000 square feet of medical facility space. The project is slated to have 1,000 residential units, half of which will marketed as affordable.

Goldman Sachs’ Urban Investment Group has invested nearly $200 million and is likely to up that to $500 million by the time the project is completed. [Crain’s]Dusica Sue Malesevic


Correction: an earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Roni-Sue Chocolates closed its Forsyth street location.