Vote on Vacant Storefront Registry Taking Place Tomorrow

  Last modified on July 30th, 2020

Back in March, Upper West Side Council Member Helen Rosenthal proposed new legislation which would require landlords to notify the city’s Department of Small Business Services when a storefront has been vacant for more than 90 days. This data would then be made available in an online registry. Owners who fail to register would face weekly fines of $1,000.

Another bill would require the SBS to maintain this database publicly, so that it could be viewed by all. The database would include information on rent,usage and occupancy status, among other details. And a third bill would require the City to provide small businesses with training and other technical assistance related to building an e-commerce presence, marketing, and business systems.


Rosenthal presented these bills at a hearing in March.


Rosenthal states:

As empty storefronts become ever more present on the Upper West Side and in neighborhoods across New York, I’ve introduced legislation requiring the City — for the first time — to track commercial storefronts citywide. A second piece of legislation requires property owners to register storefronts which are empty for more than three months, and face fines if they do not.

It’s very apparent that the commercial landscape of the Upper West Side and all of NYC has been changing dramatically over the last couple of years. But this database would really illuminate the issue.

Earlier today, Gale Brewer sent out a Tweet indicating a vote would be taking place tomorrow (July 23rd):

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