Lower East Side Voices: Essex Street Market Changes Trigger Mixed Emotions

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This week we’re partnering with NY City News Service for a video series on the historic Essex Street Market, just weeks before the vendors move over to a shiny new home on the south side of Delancey Street. The existing market will be demolished to make way for a new apartment building as part of the Essex Crossing mega-project.

The reporters from CUNY’s Graduate School of Journalism found a variety of opinions about the transition. On one hand, residents (and some vendors) are sad to see the old market go. Its demolition will wipe away some of the last vestiges of the historic Lower East Side and the only reminder of the neighborhood’s pushcart past. But many of the merchants are eagerly anticipating the new order. They’ve been suffering in recent years as foot traffic dwindled. As part of an agreement with the community, Essex Crossing developers are paying both their buildout and moving expenses.

In today’s installment, reporter Karishma Vanjani offers this take on old vs. new.