Urban Fold

SoHo Residents Balk at BID

Is it justified to believe that a proposed SoHo business improvement district, widely embraced elsewhere in the city, would only attract more hordes of visitors and non-residents? Proponents say that residents are fear-mongering.

Residents and property owners are struggling with how to manage the impacts of the area's runaway success as a retail and tourist destination. While proponents argue that the BID will help to alleviate problems such as overflowing garbage and illegal street vendors that the city is ill equipped to address, opponents see a nefarious plan to accommodate and attract even more visitors.

"The artists who colonized the neighborhood decades ago may have secured castles in the sky, but they also find themselves surrounded by streets that are clogged by tourists and lined with giant retailers and luxury stores. For them, having a business improvement district formed with the help of real estate giants means ceding more ground to invaders who, they believe, want to increase pedestrian flow to be able to charge more for retail space. "

Full Story: Critics of SoHo Proposal Ask, You Call This Improvement?

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