From ShopRite to shopper shuttles
I would like to add to the conversation regarding a supermarket on East 14th Street off First Avenue.
First let me say how pleased I am with the service, responsiveness, attitude and tone provided by our new owners and management. Kudos to them for taking into consideration tenants’ needs and interests. I am fortunate to have a car and therefore shop in Brooklyn. However, I “fill in” with items purchased at our local grocers. I understand why many people no longer purchase some items because of the exaggerated prices, sometime double what I pay in Brooklyn. Double.
There are several supermarkets that offer a wide variety of goods at reasonable prices and are not here in our neighborhood. You may have noticed that ShopRite delivers and sells their products through local supermarkets. They are already here but without their own store. The old “rules” dictated which market chains could sell in specific boroughs. I understand that that is no longer true. Why not approach ShopRite and ask them to consider opening a store in our neighborhood?
While their stores are huge and carry most everything one needs (with excellent quality and very reasonable prices), perhaps a bi-level store may be developed (like the Costco on Third Avenue in Brooklyn). Or perhaps they would consider a smaller store than their usual one. Or given the observed sparse use of the Stuy Town athletic space (East 20th Street off the Loop), perhaps they could innovate two stores, one with produce and fresh items, and the other for everything else. Together, the two spaces would be similar to the size of their usual store.
Another thought: When I age to the point that I no longer will drive, I will need to shop locally. But I will sorely miss the shopping I have been doing for my entire life, having a rich selection of stores with reasonable prices.
Why not consider developing what is done in Florida in “over 55 residential communities”? They have jitneys/buses that have set routes on set days of the week that take those without cars to shopping centers and supermarkets. While there is no fee for them, I am sure that Stuy Town-Peter Cooper Village residents would pay carfare to have the wonderful opportunity to shop in a variety of stores and pay realistic prices. The drive from our community to ShopRite in Brooklyn on Avenue I and McDonald Avenue, next to an Amazing Store, is about 11 miles door-to-door one way, less than half of a gallon of gas. The average driving time is one half-hour. The store has two huge parking lots – one inside and one outside.
Their weekly circular of sale items is online and they offer “pre-ordering” to expedite a visit. While shopping online is offered, there is no delivery to our neighborhood. I wonder if that may be a possibility they would consider.
Stuy Town-Peter Cooper Village is a powerful entity with great clout, capable of innovation. I also would not be surprised if these ideas could be supported with funding as are senior centers and NORCs.
Please seriously consider these ideas. They would benefit everyone and add to the value of living in our community, and its marketability.
Arla Harr, ST
More than just a store
The fight to keep a practical supermarket in the community goes beyond the store itself and reflects a need for our daily way of life — a need to have products that are reasonable in price, that are fresh and wholesome. A store that has familiarity, choice and outreach. A need to have community.
When we first moved here, First Avenue and every quadrant of Stuyvesant Town had stores that were in reach. Supermarkets, clothing, shoes, bakeries, butcher shops all did well and met our needs.
D’Agostino supermarket was in our building and serviced thousands of families in the northeast quadrant. To remove a supermarket for a gym was outrageous and completely uncaring. It was a done deal and the needs of the tenants meant nothing. People like to see what they buy and not everyone goes online. I have spoken to newer tenants who could not believe that we had a food source right here. The store provided familiarity, a safe haven for young and old. Everyone knew one another, and in the boiling summer days, a place to shop and cool off.
We need to look at people’s needs — money, income — realistic life situations.
Let us keep the sense of community needs; the human element is key.
Name withheld, ST
Time to flex some voting muscles
This weekend as I walked around our neighborhood, I became aware that it is “petition time.” There are eleven candidates who are gathering signatures on petitions to qualify for the November ballot. The winner will represent us in the City Council. I am very happy to know that there are this many people who believe in and want to participate in public service. I do believe that it is a high calling and very honorable.
It is important for us to think about our neighborhood which is still a neighborhood but is under constant threat. We face many game changing issues about housing, such as rent stabilization and student housing, and senior housing; the commercial rent tax which help keep rents high so small businesses and services can’t afford to be in our neighborhood. There is discussion about not having a supermarket because of chain store competition.Transportation issues such as the closing of the L train, new ferry service, the bunching of buses, not to mention how are we going to get across town if 14th Street is closed to traffic are only a few. We are also losing a hospital as we know it for a clinic that is evolving. Will it service those in need?. There are also concerns about public education, sanitation, and public safety.
We as voters have a duty to this process as well. We must participate by going to the polls and voting for the candidate that you think will best represent this district and our neighborhood in the City Council. We must attend meetings that allow the candidates to talk about themselves, get to know them and determine if what they consider important concurs with our thinking and then act on it.
GO AND VOTE! In a race that has many candidates, every vote will count.
Jane Crotty, ST