Saturday, February 24, 2007

Another Hispanic Marketplace Bites the Dust?

NY1 is reporting today that the city is planning to close "La Marqueta" on Moore Street in Williamsburg. The market, much like the Bronx Terminal Market, "of blessed memory," is considered to be an institution among the city's Hispanic population. As State Senator Martin Dilan told the station, We have to get them to understand that this is a cultural institution and if you have to subsidize that cultural institution then let's do it..."

The Brooklyn market goes all the way back to the LaGuardia administration but the city says that it is losing around $270,000 a year for the past four years which has the local community board manager shaking his head: "'They said that the Marqueta was 100% occupied and flourishing', said Community Board District Manager Gerald Esposito. "'So what has happened between the end of 2006 and now to cause EDC to want to close the facility, is beyond me.'"

What indeed! This is the kind of situation that needs to be seriously looked at because, as we have seen at the BTM, when this administration sets its sights on property than it will stop at nothing to get rid of existing tenants, especially if they are minority retailers.

Oh, and one more thing."EDC says that it will help relocate the 15 businesses located at the Marqueta..." The relocation of wholesaler/retailers who are "junto," will lead to their dispersion and eventual death without the synergy that they have built up. Let's hope that something can be done to help these merchants.