Culture on the Cheap
Moore Street Market, Revisited
After mentioning this establishment in a post last week I thought it would be fun to learn a little bit about its history— especially in light of the fact that the future of the Moore Street Market looks very cloudy nowadays. Per the June 13, 2007 edition of the New York Daily News:
…the city’s Economic Development Corp. had suddenly notified 20 merchants who operate in the cavernous Moore St. market in Williamsburg that the building was to close June 15 to make way for new affordable housing.
After decades at the same location, the merchants were furious at the city’s bullying tactics.
“At first, they offered us $20 a square foot for our businesses and told us we had 20 minutes to make up our minds,” recalled Virgilio Rodriguez, owner of Ramonita’s Restaurant and head of the merchants group. “No papers, nothing in writing. Just get out, they said.”
The bureaucrats at EDC didn’t even have the common sense to consult the local community board about the city’s plans to demolish the market – something required by city land use laws.
The good news is this market was spared closure for another year. The bad news is this year ends June 2008. Will it survive or will it be razed to build “affordable housing”? I guess we will find out soon enough.
Follows is an article from the July 29, 1941 edition of the New York Times about the opening of the Moore Street Market. Not only was the turnout for this event enormous, but New York’s very own Fiorello La Guardia was master of ceremonies. Enjoy!
Here is the plaque at Moore Street Market commemorating this event.
You can find it inside the Moore Street entrance to your left.