July 30, 2013 Staff Report
The Sunnyside Shines BID is conducting a survey to find out what stores/restaurants residents would like to see come to the neighborhood, specifically along Queens Boulevard and Greenpoint Avenue.
Sunnyside Shines began surveying shoppers in person and online on July 27th, and hopes to collect at least 400 responses over the next few weeks. The BID will use the information to determine what types of businesses would enhance the district’s draw.
Go to the following website to fill the survey.
I have been living in the neighborhood vicinity for about 8 years, it has been changing, mostly for better. Here are my suggestions:
No more: (no hard feelings, might be hard for you to survive)
Hardware Stores (a new one opening on 46 st. golden area, so sad)
Pan Asian good bar and restaurant
A decent Chinese restaurant (dine in, no take out, there is no sit down Chinese restaurant in the neighborhood)
A neighborhood gay bar/restaurant (Jackson Heights has so many)
contemporary Mediterranean restaurant
A couple good coffee shops with comfortable casual seating, good some sandwiches and salad
Turn under 7 train space into the biggest farmer markets, antique, art and craft space …in NYC and its vicinity on weekend. that’s the best space Sunnyside has, unfortunately it’s not being utilized.
Create some green spaces along the streets.
Of course there are many more shops to consider.
I remember the best comic shop on 45th street right off greenpoint avenue.
The guy that owned it invented the comic book bag.
Oh, and a Puppy Kindergarten 🙂
Ok, I’m done.
We need stores that sell quality goods, not like cheap crap sold in 99 cent stores, ABC Variety, and Baby Blue.
Wet willies type bar/lounge with outdoor seating. A park, not just a playground.
Indoor flea market
Plant more trees on queens blvd bet 46 and 39th street
A World Market type store or a Pier 1 would be good.
Turn 46th bet queens blvd and green point into a mini promenade with small kiosks selling flowers, paintings, art, souvineer. Sort of like las ramblas in Barcelona
Jamba Juice or juice bar
No more 99 cent stores or pawn shops please.
Home Goods or a home decor store, Barnes and nobles or a Strand type book store, Trader joes, a good clothing store (not cheap like baby blue), shoe store, trendy boutiques, panera bread, chipotle, antique store, arts and crafts store like michaels, target or Walmart type stores on queens blvd.
Cathy Lopez, I’m not sure if you’re serious either…
Ethnic bakeries (and there are many kinds) generally carry American favorites — what are you looking for?
There’s a jewelry store on Greenpoint between 46th & 45th.
The movie theater is obviously on Queens Blvd.
Fruit & vegetable store on 46th St. just south of Queens Blvd, another one on 40th St. & Queens Blvd., countless delis/bodegas on Queens Blvd. itself. But what’s wrong with going into a supermarket when they generally have a cleaner atmosphere and lower prices?
Do you think any of the above categories do enough business to justify more of them? It would be better to support the ones we already have first.
I remember every one of the stores mentioned above. My husband was one of the bakers in Peter Pan bakery on Greenpoint Ave. We can also use a fruit and vegetable store and a Deli on Queens Blvd. Without having to go to the supermarkets or 46th St.
We used to have two very good bakeries. Also had the Golden Rule and Golden Sun. One was a very nice women’s dress store and the other carried a variety of merchandise for everyone including home goods. Silvers was another store whose merchandise was quality and its service excellent, mostly for women. Woodside House, the original one, had gifts in the lower part which you do not find any longer. I understand the problem with landlords. They are upping the rents for apts as well as for businesses. Jehovas Witnesses took over the best movie theater, The Bliss. If they tried to make Sunnyside better and a *draw* for outsiders they might consider being a little less greedy.
We can use an American bakery, jewerly store, movie theatre, home goods just mention a few.
Most of these stores cater to the under 21’s, the bar people, the I love cheap, but nothing for anyone who would appreciate a little quality. There are a few of us left. Personally I would like to be able to wear something that leaves a little to the imagination. We had many lovely stores that were not expensive but carried a large selection of quality merchandise that our newcomers don’t seem to appreciate. Try bringing some of them back.
The rents on Queens Boulevard and Greenpoint are unbelievable. It’s a huge reason I think why so many of the stores remain shuttered. It’s nearly impossible for a small business to survive.
As far as “large” stores go, I’d personally love a Payless Shoes. Is it fancy? No. But it’s family and budget-friendly. A book store would be lovely but I can’t imagine it surviving with the rents as high as they are. I’m also waiting for that 42 Flavors store to open on Greenpoint!
Not sure if you’re serious, but there’s a dedicated tanning salon on 41st? 42nd? just north of Queens Blvd.
I think there’s a big bike shop just over the train tracks around Northern Blvd. Not in Sunnyside, obviously, but easy to get to by bike.
Bill’s Cycle Shop on Roosevelt & 63rd St. has treated me well over the years. My bike is 15+ years old and it’s still a smooth ride. There’s also a bike shop on the north side of Queens Plaza, near the entrance to the #7 train.
How about a real good bicycle shop that could have a pretty good selection of rides, plus a competent mechanic. It may not be needed by a ton of residents, but it would be nice to have one in the neighborhood.
How about a tanning salon?
What happened to the ice cream store we were promised? Doesn’t matter- I got out my old Donvier ice cream maker from the back of my closet- it works great.
The only places that are going to work are going to be service-oriented shops- high-end retail needs more more traffic than they’re going to get on Greenpoint Ave. I’ve never seen anythin worth buying in ABC or South Pole, to be honest.
As far as retail clothing, the store on the east end of Greenpoint, across from the florist on the triangle with QB has excellent vaules and a good selection. The store is not really busy, though, which is typical and the reason these shops are rare.
Lots of good ideas but few of them sound like they would be profitable.
I believe the cleaner/tailor on 43rd Ave. between 42nd & 43rd Sts. has a good-sized area for shoe repair (and other leather, belts etc.).
The 99c stores aren’t actually bargains — some of their prices are more expensive than the same items at other stores, and the products are usually junk that will need to be replaced soon, costing more money. What they are is convenient. Also gross. But not actually cheap. We can do better.
PS. As my above-mentioned experience related, mom and pop shops are not necessarily better. I would gladly have gone to a larger, chain store shoe-repair franchise if one existed, where there is some accountability, standards and concern for public relations rather than some crochetty, old geezer who thinks because he’s his own boss he can treat people like garbage when he feels like it.
I remember as a kid when there were more family owned businesses and they weren’t that great either. They opened and closed whenever, sometimes you’d walk in there’d be a family argument going on or some other nonsense you would see in a corporate establishment.
@Elizabeth the Thwarter
I absolutely loathe the shoe repair guy on 46th. A couple years ago my girlfriend brought him a pair of shoes for repair. Went to go pick them up, he couldn’t find them, said he may have taken them home with him, Came back the next day, still couldn’t find them. When I started to get annoyed, he started to mouth off to me and told me to get lost. The thing is one of the shoes had a special orthopedic device inside that cost $500. I explained that to him and that all the time she didn’t have it, she would be in pain. He couldn’t have cared less, shrugged his shoulders then angrily told us to piss off out of his store. He’s a thief as far as I’m concerned.
The ABC Store is perfect for clothes you wear just to knock about in and basics like socks, knit hats, summer shorts etc.
Of course for decent shoes, sneakers or more formal clothes you’d go to a higher end store but ABC is perfect for those on a low budget, which is a lot of people nowadays.
Sunny post hates me. Did you read the article, it’s asking about business ideas.ps 150 is a school , day care etc are social services or related to that field . Sunnyside is a neighborhood where people live and like most neighborhoods it also has stores and restaurants like most of NYC . The more successful they are the more taxes they pay and that helps government pay for more programs that you are referring to .
Banks. Nail Salons. Cell phone stores.
On the daycare front, I recommend the Holy Mountain Pre-School.
Don’t be afraid of the name, its not a religious institution, there are no religious studies. Just an honest, dedicated and caring staff who provide excellent services where children learn, and not just flop about all day long. My daughter went there as a toddler and when she was old enough for Kindergarten, her class knew the alphabet, numbers, and could actually begin to read.
I suggest you stop by and see Miss Amy and how she and her co-workers run their classes.
@Gesibel: We have at least two shoemakers in the neighborhood, at 48th avenue and 44th street and 46th street near Skillman. I’ve had excellent service from both.
Childcare options for 6 months to 2/3 years for working families (Manhattan is 2,800 a month – Sunnyside could fill a niche of less expensive but quality care). Little Friends is great, but starts at toddler age.
I think we need to be careful what we wish for….South Pole and ABC may not be ‘trendsetting’ – but you can get decent stuff for affordable prices…and Northern Blvd. has a lot of these big box type stores already, I like Sunnyside because we have access to those stores (Home Depot, Old Navy, Toys/Babies R Us etc.)- but the neighborhood itself has unique mom and pop shops.
That said, we do have an overabundance of nail salons…..women’s shoe store, paint/art/crafts store (with art classes would be great), Greek restaurant are some other options. Given the neighborhood’s diversity, it would be great to have a ‘salsa’ dance hall w/ all age/family socials, lessons, etc.
are you KIDDING!!! Barnes and noble, what the heck is wrong with you people!? Book stores are dying, because you people hang out huddled in the corner of bookstores reading like its a coffee shop and they when it comes time to leave you google for the best price elsewhere and you buy online. Gimme a break people….
I’m laughing at all the suggestions, yeah, I’M out of touch when people are asking for book stores and artsy fartsy stores. Like I said, this is where people live so the stores should reflect that. The genius up there who is telling me “we already got a day care” obviously doesn’t have kids. Most of those day cares are for prek and K…genius.
Also, PS 150 just had their afterschool summer camp to another neighborhood ALTOGETHER. making it difficult for parents in sunnyside to get take them and get them.
And another thing, we don’t need an internet cafe? Didn’t I say we need something other than the free wi fi options in a place that is IMPOSSIBLE to get a seat? People who can’t afford computers can rent a PC and a printer to do their work or homework. The library is only what..two computers at a time?
I’ll say it again, out of touch people , the REASON there’s so many 99 cents stores in Sunnyside is because people need these stores to survive.
I’d love to see GO NTURAL expand to a larger health food store. I am sick of all of the processed food and non organic vegetable markets. I have to shlep to the health food stores in LIC or Greenpoint Bklyn for my groceries.
We also need a local shoemaker.
An art supply store would be a dream.
The A&P was 42 St. & Gpt Ave., Nelson’s used to be where the library is now. Before that it was Daffy’s ice cream parlor and then a store to race toy cars.
I lived in Woodside for 73 years. Moved 5 years ago. We had bakeries on Greenpoint Ave. Peter Pan’s, Cushman’s. Benkert’s. A&P’s on Green point Ave at 43 Street; between 44 and 45th St. and 48 St on Queens Blvd. Men’s clothing at Lindy’s and Gerrys. Regal shoes. Merkel Bros Butchers. Woman’s clothing on both sides of Gpt. Ave between 45 & 46, one was Eunice’s. Sherman’s Shoe store. National shoes. Golden Sun woman’s clothes where Marty the owner had it timed that he would pull the curtain open when he knew the ladies were down to their undies. That was where Radio Shack is now. Restaurants Orsini’s , La Vie En Rose, Pipo’s. Horn & Hardart’s. 3 Century Theater movie houses on 43 St & Gpt, 45th where Jehovah is and 52 St where RiteAid is.
I guess that is what is known as “THE GOOD OLD DAYS”
This is great that are asking for suggestions. A few ideas that come to mind– a sunnyside artist’s coop. It could be run by local artists in the area. If an artist is selling their pieces they would be require to work a certain amount of hours in the store. If you had enough people involved it could work. A nice home furnishing store on a smaller scale. Years ago when I lived on the upper east side we had a place called Laytners. It was great to buy local. The place that used to be the Christmas spot would be a good space for this location. A women’s clothing boutique with the designs made by someone in the neighborhood would be impressive. Tailoring and alterations done on site. That is my two cents!
I am missing Nelson Christmas store. It was nice to go there and get an an ornaments. I would like Bed, Bath and Beyond to move into Pathmark location. I would also like more children afterschool activities: music school, language school, yoga for kids, etc.. and of course a cafe with limited internet access something similar to Aubergine Cafe.
M – There are already plenty of places to go out to eat that offer quality food in Sunnyside, the point of the Chain Resturant is price. No one goes to Fridays for quality, they go because they can afford to. My guess is that more locals can afford to spend $60 taking the family out to Fridays for dinner once a week then they can spending over $100 going to Quaint or the Dog and Duck once a week.
I swear some of you people are either clueless or so new to the neighborhood, that you don’t even know that we HAD these stores here before and the profits weren’t enough to afford the rents, so they closed up. We had a Thom McAn on 47th Street & Greenpoint Avenue and they closed. We had a Carvel ice cream store on Greenpoint Avenue, between 47th & 48th Street and they closed. We had a store named Silvers that sold bras/panties/undergarments for women of all ages on Greenpoint Avenue, between 46th Street & 45th Street, and that closed. I am born and raised here and I saw all this change. The one store that I wish would close would be that dreadful pet store on 46th Street who sells puppy mill dogs. With the nook & kindle, a book store is not going to work here. A boutique like April Glass would be great, but as we learned from their demise that it’s all about location, location, location. Before moving to 40th Street, from being on Queens Boulevard, Patrice did try looking at a spot on Skillman Avenue between 45th & 46th Street, but again, the rent was too high. That would have been a PERFECT location. You all need to start thinking outside the box on a real good store to come to the neighborhood. A clothing retail for men and women wouldn’t be a bad idea, given my options are South Pole (NOT) and ABC Variety (Hell No). Is Sunnyside only good for pubs and drinking? I always though an arcade spot for teenagers to hang out at, instead of sitting at Skillman Park and smoking weed, would be a good idea, I am just not sure the revenue would be there. Again, we USED to have a small arcade store on Queens Boulevard off of 42nd Street, but that closed up too. I think a restaurant chain like the Outback Steakhouse might be a decent idea, but the parking issue is always something to contend with, but maybe local residents can pick up the slack for that. We need to start brain storming here folks. If I see another nail salon or eyebrow threading joint location open up, I am going to cringe. For what it’s worth, home cooking is always the least expensive route, but to pick up a dinner for $7/$8 is still a good price and the food is yummy & fresh.
I would love to see the return of April Glass or a store similar to it. A decent clothing store would b very nice for eg New York and company. Their prices are affordable and they cater to all sizes.A nice shoe store would b great. A Jewish or Italian deli would be mouthwatering . Please no more 99 cent stores, thrift shops,pawn shops or nail salons. 46th street pedestrian walkway s a wonderful idea.
Nope – we really don’t need those disgusting chain restaurants. Better quality restaurants is what is needed. Not processed, frozen meals and Grade D steaks.
It sounds like you’re the one out of touch. Butcher Block is great, but probably the most yuppie grocery store in the neighborhood — prices are higher there than they are elsewhere. If working families really do buy hot dinner for everyone there, it seems like a bad decision (and you should look up “home cooked”).
At the same time, I don’t know what you pay for internet, but $60 is indeed too much . . . I pay $25 a month and it’s more than enough for me to look things up.
If you’re looking for kids’ summer programs, join the Sunnyside listserve, there have been multiple posts advertising cheap daycare/camp nearby.
I agree that Sunnyside is neighborhood. We need the basic stores that serve people who live here, clothing, food, household goods, professionals. A gym would be nice.
The nature of retail has changed so much over the years those stores that filled traditional niches years ago had to shut down. Retail is in trouble everywhere. I don’t think Sunnyside is the only hamlet to have a crisis like this.
The best bet for community growth via business could be an affordable chain restaurant (Fridays/Applebees). It should bring in steady foot traffic during the Afternoon and evening hours and it could offer numerous entry level service industry job opportunities for the local residents. Obviously the parking issue would still remain but the post 6 PM diners should be able to park under the 7 line once the daily commuters have returned from work and headed for home.
SunnysidePostHatesMe14 – we don’t need an Internet cafe. People aren’t going to pay to use a computer. They’ll sit in Starbucks and mooch off the free wifi. There are also free computers at the library.
Also, there is a daycare called Little Friends School on 47th street. It’s a bit expensive and the new management sucks but it’s a daycare. I also think there’s another one further up on skillman.
Child care doesn’t come cheap and if they people in this area can’t afford to pay it then no one will open one up. Little Friends charges around $980 a month for full day care, 5 days a week. That’s alot already when tacked on to the rent, utilities and other expensive a families have.
A day care center sounds good. Also, we could use a shoe store or a decent clothing store. Yes, keep dreaming. And by the way: Barnes and Noble is closing many of its stores because so many people buy their books through the Nook or Kindle. Yes, we need another nail salon!!!
Take it easy hatesme, it’s only some suggestions for a business. You sound like a very angry person , try to relax a little
I love how you throw around the terms “yuppie” and “hipster” in such a derogatory manner.
These comments do a good job of how completely out of touch you yuppies are. “we don’t need a book store because half of Sunnyside is Illiterate” says Hoof, And you people had the nerve to call ME racist?
Sunnyside isn’t a shopping district, its a NEIGHBORHOOD, it’s a place where working families come to live before hipsters came here and thought they could create their own private Utopia. Sunnyside needs stores that cater to the communities needs not wants.
What do we need? DAY CARES. you guys put money into a freaking dog run but where do all the kids go? There’s no after school programs other than what the school provides, there’s no affordable day care or summer school programs because PS 150 closes up shop for the whole freaking summer.
What else does Sunnyside need? Deli’s that offer more home cooked meals. Why does Butcher Block kick so much ass? Because people who come home from a hard days work can get a quick and delicious meal . We need more places that offer this for the working families, not just fast food junk.
What else does Sunnyside need? how about an online cafe?I’m not talking Starbucks where people will literally hog up a table for 2 hours, I mean a place where people can use a computer and do their resume or look up stuff for their homeworks. People don’t have computers and don’t feel like spending 60+ bucks for internet.
THESE are the things Sunnyside NEEDS. not those stupid suggestions up above. Been here over 30 damn years and this neighborhood may see more money but its in the worst condition its ever been in. You guys are in an illusion of grandeur that is going to collapse upon itself once you lose your young generation to a different, more hip zone.
I don’t often comment here, but wanted to voice support for the idea of a pedestrian stretch on 46th St or Greenpoint/46th-to-44th… I think it’s excellent. Sprinkle some of those colorful metal tables and chairs in the middle of the street, and the south side would gain a very welcome communal public area. It would give more support to the businesses on either side as it becomes more of a destination for area residents, and would help attract new public-facing businesses to that stretch.
Get ready folks!! another nail salon just opened on Skillman & 46th, next to Claret. It took the space occupied by the Romanian restaurant!! I’m so excited, it’s Sunnyside’s first nail salon!!!!!!
@ KeepDrinking – be careful not to diss Hoof Hearted’s favorite store, ABC Variety, or as she likes to call it: Saks Greenpoint Avenue. Hoof Hearted clearly has a penchant for junk…
Probably the biggest draw to Greenpoint Avenue is the Jehova’s Witness hall. They bring in hundreds of people every weekend. I see them in a lot of the businesses on Greenpoint before and after their meetings.
I just checked the most recent census data and just shy of 60% of local residents speak Englsih “very well” or better.
I’m not saying that there isn’t a language gap in the neighborhood, that’s evident just walking around, but Hoof Hearted’s claim that “about half the people in Sunnyside are illiterate in English.” is flat out wrong.
Barnes & Noble isn’t expanding now. I think we would have a better chance of an independent bookstore/coffee shop. Probably off the 40th St. stop since Starbucks is off 46th. It would definitely be a labor of love, and not guaranteed to succeed, but two indie bookstores just went into Astoria. Seems like we might be able to have one, especially combined with the higher profit margin of a coffee shop.
Or a craft store — they did ask about fabric/sewing in the survey — could work? That bakery supply store has been in Sunnyside for years, even moving from 40th to a bigger and more central location on Queens Blvd. a few years ago. If they can keep it up, why not a sewing or knitting store?
Anything but more 99c and thrift stores . . . they aren’t even cheap, just gross.
A nice inexpensive brick oven pizza place , with a few other main options and reasonably priced wine would be great
None of those major franchises will open up without a large parking facility.
And a Barnes and Noble will fail since about half the people in Sunnyside are illiterate in English. Besides, they’d get Spanish language books for free at the library. The hipsters and yuppies who might like to see B&N are probably the same ones that like to sit and read the books for hours then order it cheaper on-line on their iPhones.
One thing that might stimulate business along Greenpoint is how about the business owners clean their awnings once in a while? Some of them are not only tacky to begin with but dirty and grimy. Have you seen Pio Pio Riko’s awning? It’s filthy. Not appetizing at all.
It cracks me up when I see suggestions like Trader Joe’s or Bed Bath & Beyond. I can’t imagine how they would be interested in building a store around here. They need huge crowds to be successful.
Where’s the ice cream store?
I like buying food at some of the shops on the north side of QB- the new butcher or Butcher Block, Parrot and Baruirs, but I think that they do not get enough customers to really be profitable. I’ll bet the supermarket on GP sells more canned coffee that Baruirs & Parrot combined, which is a shame because their coffee is superior and at a better price.
we could really use a handful of dirty 99 cent stores, a few nail salons, and a thai restaurant or 2. if there’s any room left over, maybe a pub?
Austin Street in Forest Hills is nice. I don’t see why Greenpoint Ave can’t be on that level after all these years. Hopefully we can get there soon!
I would love to see Barnes & Noble!! Also, Bath & Body Works. There are way to many stores with nothing of consequence. Our neighborhood has potential, but no one is doing anything about it. Its a shame. Been here a good 33yrs. Yet to see something new & exciting.
Agree with Hoof Hearted’s idea for a pedestrian plaza on 46th Street. Admit that I don’t drive in the neighborhood, but it’s a short block anyway. Can’t imagine it’s that essential for drivers.
Where did I mention junk stores?
A Red Light District. That would increase the bottom line overnight.
What we need is more pharmacies and nail salons.
I agree Barnes and Noble. More name brand stores. I disagree with Hoof Hearted, I am not inclined to shop in junk stores.
One idea that I think might work, something I’ve seen them do in many places in Europe is to pedestrianize the main commercial street. This way it’s quieter, more spacious for people, more pleasant and easier for people to go from shop to shop without battling an endless stream of cars and buses. I think businesses would flock to such an area.
46st between Queens Blvd and Greenpoint would be ideal for pedestrianization as well as Greenpoint between 46 and 44 streets.
Kudos to Sunnyside Shines for putting out the survey. An Apple store or a Barnes and Noble! Short of those pipe dreams, would love to see an art gallery, a camera store, a sporting goods/sports memorabilia store and a Jewish deli.
Does it matter? The only ones who can afford the rents they’re asking now are banks, Duane Read/CVS/Rite-Aids, bars, and fast food joints. Smaller, unique places like April Glass which was a real neighborhood treasure, don’t have much of a chance. They’re getting gradually squeezed out of existence.
Forget about a bookstore, they’re just not profitable and for some reason, when people buy books they prefer to buy them in Manhattan or on Amazon. Any bookstore here is at a disadvantage because a good percentage of the locals don’t read books in English.
Lots of people say Trader Joe’s but if you think parking’s a female dog now, see what happens if any popular franchise like Trader Joe’s showed up.