Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer released a report earlier this month titled Saving the Mom & Pops: 10 Ways to Support Independent Retail Stores and Keep Manhattan Vibrant (available online and as a PDF).  From Harlem to the East Village,  Manhattan’s small businesses have been feeling the squeeze of rising rents and incoming chain stores.  (While this issue affects all the boroughs, Stringer’s report focuses specifically on Manhattan).  The report outlines many reasons why small businesses benefit the City, and outlines the following 10 strategies to help preserve them:

  • Get the facts: Close the gap in our knowledge of Manhattan’s independent retailers
  • Encourage space for small, independent stores in new developments
  • Use zoning to discourage storefront hogs
  • Double the pool of micro-loans available to small independent retailers
  • Make the day-to-day concerns of independent retailers the concerns of City Hall
  • Encourage business assistance
  • Help retailers reduce energy costs
  • Consider tax relief for struggling retailers
  • Connect our smaller businesses to federal, state and city economic recovery programs
  • Pilot Districts: Implement tailored versions of these recommendations in distressed shopping corridors