The Neighborhood Retail Alliance, in conjunction with a number of City Council members, good government groups, business organizations, independent merchants and labor, is hosting a Bronx Terminal Market press conference today on the steps of city hall at 11:00 a.m.
The event will have a strong international flavor as African, Caribbean and Hispanic merchants from all over the city come to support the market, a place where they shop for hard-to-get ethnic products that their new immigrant customers desire. It is important to realize that the potential destruction of this largest ethnic market on the east coast will not only be costly to the south Bronx but to New York City as a whole.
We will also be focusing on the lack of public process surrounding this entire redevelopment project. Not only was the original lease transfer done secretively and without soliciting alternative visions from other developers, but the public has, in general, been prevented from contributing its input regarding the nature of the project. We do not think that one developer should be able to force its supposedly beneficial vision upon a community without that said community being involved.
This is especially true in the context of public subsidization. Related’s plan to turn the Market into a mega-mall will garner tens of millions of taxpayer dollars and we must be asking whether this money is worth it. Jobs with Justice will be present to explain a bill that it’s promoting (along with Assemblyman Brodsky) that would increase community review when public subsidies are given. Good Jobs New York, another good government group concerned with transparency, will be echoing this theme of an open public process with a real cost/benefit analysis concerning financial incentives.
The full release can be found here. We'll keep you updated.