Jackson Heights BID Delivers On Promise, Merchants Say
A popular shopping strip in Jackson Heights, Queens is sporting a new look after years of deterioration and is being credited to the work of a newly refreshed business improvement district. NY1's Ruschell Boone filed the following report.
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The Jackson Heights shopping strip is looking a lot prettier these days with news trees, benches and cleaner streets. It's a far cry from what the 82nd Street business improvement district or BID used to look like. Now it’s got a new look, new leadership and a new name. It's now called the 82nd Street partnership and business owners appear to like it.
Retail businesses are members of the BID and many of the store owners had complained to local leaders that under the old Business Improvement District there wasn’t a lot of improvement.
"It’s something Councilmember Ferreras and I have been working very hard for a long period of time and we are finally beginning to see it realized," said City Councilman Daniel Dromm.
"Our BID was not benefitting from the beautification that BID dollars should be getting and that’s when I reached out to the commissioner and asked him to walk the district," said City Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras.
The BID runs from 37th to Baxter Avenue and after witnessing some of the problems the new group worked with the city on a 100 day plan to improve the area with the BID's $225,000 budget.
"They have picked a new leader and what you see now is a lot more services: A graffiti removal program, a new website that’s coming. They’re talking about special events," said Small Business Service Commissioner Rob Walsh.
"We want to focus on promoting 82nd Street as one of the city’s most diverse authentic and vibrant food and shopping corridors," said 82nd Street Partnership Executive Director Seth Taylor.
The city says if the current plans are successful it would be open to the idea of expanding the BID another 20 blocks to Citi Field.