Report: Longtime Residents Concerned About New Essex Street Market (Updated)

Essex Street Market, April 2017.

Essex Street Market, April 2017.

Longtime Lower East Side residents are nervous about the looming move of the Essex Street Market into a glassy new space across Delancey Street. That was one of the main takeaways from a survey conducted by the Essex Street Market Vendor Association. It’s part of a report will be presented tomorrow (Wednesday) at a meeting of Community Board 3’s economic development committee (it was recently posted on CB3’s website).

A surprising number of locals surveyed did not know that the 78-year-old market is about to undergo its biggest transition since opening in 1940. When the move happens later this year, the market will become part of the big Essex Crossing development project.

The report, Building Community at the Essex Street Market, was designed to solicit feedback about the uses of a demonstration kitchen and public events space that will be part of the new market. After conducting customer surveys, focus groups and a visioning workshop, the vendor association summed up,  “…the community’s mains concerns as they relate to the Market’s move, which include affordability, current vendor vitality and changes to neighborhood character.”

essex street market

Back in 2011, some of the vendors and members of the local community fought a losing battle to save the historic market building at 120 Essex St. The city’s Economic Development Corp., which operates the Essex Street Market, argued that the facility was badly out-of-date and too small to be viable long-term. The community board successfully pushed for measures to protect the existing vendors. Their rents, for example, were to stay the same in the new building. Still, today there are well-founded worries that the gussied up market in a glossy new tower at 115 Delancey St. will lose its authenticity, old world feel and commitment to serving the local community.

In the recently completed report, the vendor association stated, “The quality of vendor-shopper relationships at Essex Street Market makes it a unique community space and more than just a shopping destination. Programs and events that support the interests of both vendors and neighborhood residents are essential to maintaining and cultivating a sense of community (in the new space).”

The outreach effort included focus groups and a visioning session.

The outreach effort included focus groups and a visioning session.

Only about half of those surveyed while shopping in the market were aware of the upcoming move (more people responding to questions online knew about it). Only 13% of the in-store respondents knew that all of the existing vendors will be in the new facility. People expressed concerns that vendors could be paying more rent, and that as a result, food prices would increase.

One shopper said, “I love Essex Street Market because the prices are low, and I’m afraid that this move will cause significant price increases.” Longtime residents were particularly worried, while newer residents tended to express optimism about the changes. Other shoppers explained, “The Essex Street Market is the only place that keeps culture alive for Puerto Ricans, Dominicans, Spanish, and Mexicans,” and “there is no where else in this neighborhood that sells my culture’s food. I [would] have to go to El Barrio or Brooklyn.”

The merchant association said it, “plans to survey vendors to better understand how they foresee pricing structure to change – or stay the same – in the new Market. This feedback, alongside information regarding vendors’ new permit conditions, will help determine what role (the vendor association) can play in ensuring that the Market’s price points remain affordable.”

Rendering: New Essex Street Market.

Rendering: New Essex Street Market.

The report includes several recommendations. It suggests building on existing relationships with local settlement houses and other organizations to make sure the community knows the market is a, “destination for free and reduced-price public programming.” The survey showed a strong desire for more food education and intergenerational programming, plus kids cooking classes. The report calls for an outreach and marketing strategy to reach both new and longtime residents:

Outreach should focus on targeted messaging in both print and digital, with the former concentrating on how the Market will maintain its current makeup and the latter speaking to exciting developments around new vendors and event opportunities.

The new market will be 37,000 square feet, about triple the size of the current facility. There will be 12 new vendors, as well as two stand-alone restaurants. The city will continue to run the Essex Street Market, in partnership with the vendor association and the Lower East Side Partnership. Essex Crossing will also include a subterranean shopping pavilion called the Market Line. Both the Essex Market and the first portion of the Market Line are supposed to open this coming fall.

As mentioned, the report will be presented to CB3 tomorrow evening. The meeting takes place at 200 East 5th St., and begins at 6:30 p.m.

UPDATE: We have a followup to this story here, including details about the city’s efforts to get the word out about the upcoming move of the Essex Street Market.

Building Community at New Essex Street Market by The Lo-Down on Scribd

At a Soggy Block Party, Essex Street Market Vendors Look to the Future

Essex Crossing's developers were honored at the Essex Street Market Block Part held May 19, 2018.

Essex Crossing’s developers were honored at the Essex Street Market Block Part held May 19, 2018.

It was pretty much a washout Saturday at the Essex Street Market’s annual Block Party, but merchants and customers alike braved the elements and made the best of it.

The Vendor Association also looked ahead to the future. In a few months, the 78-year-old public market will be moving across the street to an expanded facility in the Essex Crossing project. At this past weekend’s event, Vendor Association President Anne Saxelby dedicated this year’s block party to Delancey Street Associates, the consortium building Essex Crossing. Ron Moelis, CEO of L+M Development Partners; Charlie Bendit, co-CEO of Taconic Investment Partners; and Isaac Henderson, Essex Crossing’s project manager were on hand to accept awards.

As part of the developers’ agreement with the city, they are building the new market and paying moving expenses for all of the vendors. Saxelby thanked them, as well as the city’s Economic Development Corp. (which runs the market) and Community Board 3 for working to make the new market happen. “When we first learned of the Essex Crossing project back in 2013,” said Saxelby, “we as vendors were really concerned because we didn’t know what our fate would be. Thanks to the work of the EDC, CB3 and Delancey Street Associates we have a beautiful new market, and all of the current vendors will be moving over, plus 14 new vendors.” 

Also attending Saturday’s rainy party were Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and City Council member Margaret Chin.

At one point, Chin ducked inside the market to pick up a few items at one of the newer stalls, Essex Olive & Spice House. In her public remarks, she said, “The new market will be gorgeous and wonderful,” said Chin, “but there are a lot of new vendors in the market right now, so please check it out. I did. It’s just wonderful to celebrate the history of the market and also to celebrate the neighborhood.”

The EDC, Vendor Association and Lower East Side Partnership have been sponsoring the block party during the past few years as a way to boost awareness of the market, which has struggled to attract foot traffic. The new market will be located at 115 Delancey St., just across from the current building.

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Reminder: Essex Street Market Block Party is Coming Up Saturday

Essex Street Market Block Party 2016.

Essex Street Market Block Party 2016.

Here’s a reminder about this weekend’s Essex Street Market Block Party. Yes, the weather looks a little bit dicey, but you can handle it. The outdoor festival on Saturday afternoon will be a bittersweet occasion. In the fall, the vendors in the 78-year-old public market will move over to a gleaming new space in the Essex Crossing project. So the block party really is a last hurrah.

You’ll be able to sample food from many of the existing vendors, plus some of the new operators who will be part of the Essex Street Market 2.0, including Samesa, a Middle Eastern spot from Max and Eli Sussman, Chinatown Ice Cream Factory and Harlem Shambles, a butcher focused on high quality meats.

The block party takes place from noon-5 p.m. outside the market on Essex Street, near Rivington Street. Here’s the Facebook invite.

Here Are Fresh Photos and Renderings of the New Essex Street Market

Photos ny NYC EDC.

Photos ny NYC EDC.

The new Essex Street Market is starting to look like, well, a market. The Economic Development Corp. (EDC) has just made some construction photos available, as well as new renderings.

If all goes according to plan, the vendors of the historic Lower East Side institution will move into the new space in the fall. The expanded facility at 115 Delancey St. is part of the Essex Crossing project. Here’s a look:

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The 26 existing merchants will be joined by 11 new vendors, a handful of which have already been announced. There will also be two new full-service restaurants and a demonstration kitchen on the second floor. In the past, EDC officials have said they’ll be paying homage to the 78-year-old facility with some historic flourishes. Designers. for example, have been refurbishing the old “Orchard Essex Meat Market” sign that hung in the Essex Street Market building that was torn down on this site.

 

The new market will be part of a 26-story tower on the southeast corner of Essex and Delancey streets. The current market will remain open until the move happens, supposedly in about three to four months.

Essex Street market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by SHoP Architects.

Essex Street Market rendering by WXY.

Essex Street Market rendering by SHoP Architects.

Rendering by Delancey Street Associates.

Rendering by Delancey Street Associates.

Exhibition Opening Friday Explores Essex Street Market’s Histories Before the Big Move

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It’s almost time to say goodbye to the old Essex Street Market, which has operated out of the same facility on the Lower East Side since 1940. In just a few months, the vendors will be moving across the street to a brand new space as part of the Essex Crossing project. Cuchifritos Gallery + Project Space, a market tenant, will be acknowledging the momentous occasion with a special exhibition opening tomorrow (Friday, April 27).

The show, In, Of, and Crossing Essex, features projects from three artists, offering visitors, “opportunities to explore the public and private histories of the Market through the stories, perspectives, and lived experiences of the people who work and shop there every day.”

Sonia Louise Davis, Dillon de Give and Hatuey Ramos-Fermín have created a series of installations and public programs that will take place in the market through June 10.

Among the scheduled events:

April 27-May 13 (Thursday through Sunday from 2-6 P.M.)
Send a Message From Essex Street Market
Work with a facilitator to construct and send immaterial “postcards” from Essex Market before its historic relocation.

Monday, May 14 from 6:30-8 p.m.
PANEL: Small Businesses as Cultural Contributors
This discussion will bring together artists, business owners, and city organizers to discuss the contributions of small businesses to the Lower East Side’s cultural fabric. Panelists will consider how artists and cultural organizations in the neighborhood have aligned with small businesses, and consider ways to strengthen the foundation of how cultural vibrancy is represented in a city-wide context.

Tuesday May 29 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
WORKSHOP: After-Hours Performance Workshop with Sonia Louise Davis
Explore Essex Street Market in a unique movement/sound-based experience led by Sonia Louise Davis. Participants will improvise in the empty market while it is closed to shoppers and create scores to guide their private performances.

Saturday, June 2 from 2-6 p.m.
WORKSHOP: Drop-in Score Making with Sonia Louise Davis
Stop in for an afternoon of hands-on score making. Informed by a wide range of artists’ graphic notations, participants can practice drawing or invent their own marks and symbols.

Sunday, June 10 from 3-7 p.m.
Roundtable and Closing Reception
What steps can artists take to support small businesses? Looking at the ways artists and organizers in Lower East Side have worked together to support small businesses, this roundtable discussion will question how artists and cultural institutions can engage as active community members by supporting small businesses – and what this kind of support looks like in concrete, day-to-day actions.

The May 14 and June 10 events will be presented  in partnership by Artists Alliance Inc, and The People’s LES/FABnyc. Tomorrow’s opening reception takes place from 6-8 p.m. Click here for more details.

Dominican Cravings Opens at the Essex Street Market Friday

Image via Dominican Cravings' Instagram.

Image via Dominican Cravings’ Instagram.

A new vendor is joining the Essex Street Market starting tomorrow (Friday, April 13). Emmanuel Diaz is soft opening a stall called Dominican Cravings.

After stints at April Bloomfield’s Salvation Burger and Salvation Taco and Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s ABC Cocina, Diaz decided to strike out on his own. The graduate of the International Culinary Center settled on the cuisine of his native Dominican Republic. The dishes are meant to preserve the traditions of the DR, while adding some modern touches.

Dominican Cravings is specializing in patacon, smashed plantain sandwiches, and empanadas. One dish, tres golpes patacon, takes the classic Dominican breakfast of eggs, fried cheese and salami, adding caramelized onions. You can see the full menus below. You can stop by the market any time to sample Diaz’s specialties (the stall is located across from Luna Brothers Fruit Plaza). It will be open Monday-Saturday 8 a.m.-6 p.m., and Sunday 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Or you can visit him at the Essex Street Market Block Party on May 19.

As you probably know, the market is moving across Delancey Street to the new Essex Crossing development in September. All of the vendors, including Dominican Cravings, will be making the move. The market will be open continuously until the switchover to the expanded facility.

Dominican Cravings Menu 1 by The Lo-Down on Scribd

Dominican Cravings Menu 2 by The Lo-Down on Scribd

Essex Street Market Block Party: One Last Celebration Before the Big Move

Essex Street Market Block Party 2017.

Essex Street Market Block Party 2017.

Over the past few years, The Essex Street Market has celebrated the arrival of spring/summer with a block party. This year’s version, happening Saturday, May 19, has special meaning. That’s because it’s the last few months in the historic 1940 building before the market moves across Delancey Street to the new Essex Crossing development.

As usual, there will be food from your favorite vendors and entertainment all throughout the afternoon. The block party takes place between noon and 5 p.m. In addition to the existing merchants, you’ll also get a first taste of some of the new vendors who will be added to the mix in the expanded facility. Samesa, a Middle Eastern spot from Max and Eli Sussman and Chinatown Ice Cream factory will both be taking part. We’re told most food items will be $5.

A deal was worked out years ago, allowing the vendors to move to the new market at 115 Delancey St. at the same rents they’re paying now. While the Essex Crossing developers are paying to build the new facility, it will continue to be operated by the city’s Economic Development Corp. The move-in is supposed to happen in September.

If you’d like to register for the block party you can do it here.

Essex Street Market Additions Include Middle Eastern Counter From the Sussman Brothers

Rendering: Essex Street Market.

Rendering: Essex Street Market.

Four more vendors have been revealed for the newly expanded Essex Street Market, scheduled to open this coming September as part of the Essex Crossing project.

The city’s Economic Development Corp. announced the new merchants today. They include: Samesa, a contemporary Middle Eastern takeaway counter from sibling chefs Max and Eli Sussman; Josephine’s Feast!, a New York-based producer of artisanal jams and preserves; Saffron, a Fort Green-based florist; and Flower Power Herbs and Roots, a branch of the herbal apothecary shop located on East Ninth Street. 

The market will be moving across the street from its current location to a new two-story space on the ground floor of 115 Delancey St. The 26 existing vendors will be joined by nine new operators. The EDC, which runs the market, previously announced the additions of Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, Essex Shambles (a Harlem-based butcher) and Zerza (a Moroccan restaurant previously located in the East Village).

A full-service version of Samesa opened a couple of years ago in Williamsburg. The restaurant and the Essex Market stall are patterned after the small falafel shops, halal trucks and Middle Eastern restaurants in Detroit.  In a statement, the Sussman brothers said, “The long history of the original Essex Market on the LES, coupled with the community and social goals of the new market makes this a dream project for us to play a part in.”

Josephine’s Feast! was founded in 2009 by Laura O’Brien. From a commercial kitchen in Astoria, she makes an assortment of marmalades, fruit butters, chutneys, spice rubs and blends, natural sea salts, granola, heirloom cakes and gift collections. The Essex Market stall will be her first permanent retail location.

Saffron also opened in 2009. The store specializes in unique flower arrangements and also sells handmade good from local artists. Flower Power Herbs and Roots was opened in the East Village in 1993 by Lata Chettri-Kennedy. The store offers a wide range of dried herbs and extracts for cooking, medicinal and beauty uses.

The new Essex Street Market will triple in size when the move takes place. The new 36,000 square foot facility will include a demonstration kitchen and two full-service restaurants (they have not yet been announced). In today’s press release, the EDC noted that the, “the new market will also continue to provide affordable food products for the Lower East Side’s diverse communities.” [a long-standing agreement allows the vendors . to move to the new facility at their current rents.]

Earlier this month, the Essex market lost an existing vendor, Boubouki, which shut down as owner Rona Economou chose to move on to other opportunities in the food industry.

 

Boubouki Closes Stall in Essex Street Market Next Week

Boubouki at Essex Market

Boubouki, the tiny stall offering authentic Greek food, will be closing for good in the Essex Street Market next week.

Rona Economou told us this afternoon she’s decided to move on to a new opportunity after 7-and-a-half years making spinach pies and baklava. Economou made a life change in 2010, after losing her job as an attorney during the Great Recession.

She called the experience in the market both amazing and hard. As the New York Times recounted in 2011, Economou would wake up every morning at 5:30 to start baking. She works six days a week and relies on her mother to pick up olive oil and flour. “I’m glad she won’t have to do that anymore,” said Economou. On the other hand, running a micro-business on the Lower East Side afforded her life experiences she could never have imagined.  Economou has forged strong relationships with her customers. One 90-year-old woman visits Boubouki twice a week, depending o the little shop for meals.

In 2015, several Essex Street Market vendors closed down, citing a drop in foot traffic. Since that time, the Economic Development Corp. (which runs the market), the Vendor Association and the Lower East Side Partnership have worked together to provide better marketing support for the merchants. Meanwhile, they’re pointing towards a move to a new expanded facility in the new Essex Crossing development this coming fall. A new vendor, Dominican Cravings, is scheduled to open in the next few weeks.

Economou said she feels that businesses all over the Lower East Side are struggling due to low foot traffic. She doesn’t feel it’s an issue exclusive to the market.

Boubouki’s last day selling food will be this coming Tuesday.

 

Help Shape Programs at New Essex Street Market Feb. 5

Rendering of the new Essex Street Market.

Rendering of the new Essex Street Market.

In the fall of this year, a new Essex Street Market will open on the south side of Delancey Street as part of the Essex Crossing project (keep in mind that all of the vendors are still operating until that time in the existing facility).

One feature of the newly expanded space will be a second floor demonstration kitchen and public event space. Coming up on Monday, Feb. 5, there will be a community visioning workshop. It’s your chance to talk about what types of programs, classes and events you’d like to see. The session is being coordinated by the market’s Vendor Association.

The workshop takes place at 6:30 p.m. on the fourth floor of 175 Delancey St. That’s the Essex Crossing senior building that quietly opened to residents a few months ago. You can RSVP by emailing  info@esmva.org or calling (212) 334-6943.

Coming to the New Essex Street Market: Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, Harlem Shambles (Butcher), Zerza Reboot

Rendering: Essex Street Market.

Rendering: Essex Street Market.

The city’s Economic Development Corp. (EDC) announced today a few of the new vendors joining the Essex Street Market when it opens an expanded facility as part of the Essex Crossing project next year.

Joining 27 existing merchants in the new market space will be three independent businesses well known to New Yorkers. They are Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, a local institution for four decades; Essex Shambles, an offshoot of the butcher shop Harlem Shambles; and Zerza, a new concept from Radouane Eljaouhari (he previously operated the Moroccan spot Zerza on East Sixth Street).

The 77-year-old market will be tripling its space in the new facility, which is scheduled to open on the south side of Delancey Street in September of 2018. The EDC, which operates the facility, is working on filling nine more stalls, plus two stand-alone restaurant spaces.

For most locals, Chinatown Ice Cream Factory requires no introduction. The little shop best known for its delicious Asian-inspired flavors has been a fixture on Bayard Street since 1977, and is now managed by second generation owner Christina Seid. Brothers Timothy and Mark Forrester opened Brooklyn Shambles on Frederick Douglass Boulevard in 2011. The whole-animal butchers will now be bringing their locally sourced beef, lamb, pork and poultry downtown. Eljaouhari was forced to close Zerza in the East Village due to spiraling rents. In the new Lower East Side stall, he’ll be marrying traditional Moroccan flavors with his passion for healthy eating (Eljaouhari is a marathon runner).

(L-R) Christina Seid, the Harlem Shambles team, Radouane Eljaouhari.

(L-R) Christina Seid, the Harlem Shambles team, Radouane Eljaouhari.

In a press release that was put out a short time ago, Christina Seid of Chinatown Ice Cream Factory said, “Essex Market made perfect sense to us because our family has had a long history in the downtown Chinatown/Lower East Side/Little Italy area. We are third generation New Yorkers, so we have seen all the changes over the years.  We hope to tell the story of the Lower East Side’s rich history through our ice cream flavors. Essex Market has the small local, family feel that we were looking for. It found us and it was natural to say ‘yes’ to the opportunity.”

Tim Forrester of Essex Shambles said, “We plan to bring the same community spirit, as well as the same well-raised, highest quality meats, that we’ve fostered at Harlem Shambles for years down to the new Essex Street Market… We are excited to be a part of the Essex Street Market and look forward to becoming a part of this vibrant, energetic and diverse downtown neighborhood.”

“For years,” explained Radouane Eljaouhari, “the vibrant community of the Lower East Side was home to my first restaurant, Zerza… So when thinking about where to build my next concept, the neighborhood was a natural first choice. I was thrilled to find such a welcoming group of vendors and affordable, state-of-the-art space at the New Essex Street Market, and can’t wait to open to the public next year.”

“Since 1940, Essex Street Market has been both a hub for the city’s food economy and a cultural center for Lower East Siders,” said EDC President James Patchett. “We are thrilled to welcome Chinatown Ice Cream Factory, Essex Shambles, and Zerza to our vibrant mix of community-oriented vendors. We look forward to opening the new space next year and providing the neighborhood with an even better shopping and dining experience.”

Essex Street Market, April 2017.

Essex Street Market, April 2017.

City officials tell us they have been focused on recruiting new vendors committed to embracing the community spirit inside the market. All three new vendors have a track record of interacting with locals in their respective neighborhoods. As the new facility takes shape, EDC staff say the priority has been making sure the market does not become a conventional food hall (with an emphasis on prepared foods), but remains a food market with a diverse selection of products.

The current market will stay open until the new 36,000 square foot facility is ready in the fall of next year. The new market, located at 115 Delancey St., will offer extended hours for evening shopping and will include a demonstration kitchen for events on the second floor. In addition to the public market, the building will include the first phase of the Market Line, a large shopping pavilion. The food-centric portion of that facility, managed by the Essex Crossing developers, will feature about 70 vendors in the basement of 115 Delancey Street, upon opening next year.

During the past several years, Community Board 3, the Essex Market Vendor Association and the Lower East Side Partnership lobbied for protections to make sure existing merchants and local residents weren’t priced out of the new market. The new facility will be operated by the EDC, in collaboration with the Vendor Association and the LES Partnership.

Santa Comes to the Essex Street Market on Sunday

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The holiday season will be in full swing at the Essex Street Market on Sunday. Santa will be visiting from 2-4 p.m. They’ll be decorating the Christmas tree, and you’re invited to make homemade ornaments with the Essex Street Market crew. There will also be free hot chocolate and candy canes.

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We Tried Out the Essex Street Market’s New Online Delivery Service

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Our first attempt at using the Essex Street Market’s new delivery service turned out well.

Recently, the vendors at the historic Lower East Side market teamed up with Mercato, a company that helps independent businesses establish an online marketplace. After placing an order this past Thursday, we opted for Friday delivery (same day delivery was available; it just wasn’t convenient for us). Our order, which included items from five separate merchants, arrived on time, with nothing missing, nothing damaged.

Here’s what we got: Some potatoes from Luna Brothers grocery, a piece of smoked and peppered wild bluefish from Nordic Preserves, a jar of garlic powder from Essex Olive & Spice House, strawberry jam from Formaggio Essex and some butter from Saxelby Cheesemongers.  The bottom line: This service seems like a great option for anyone who wants to support the local shops inside the Essex Street Market, rather than patronizing big corporate delivery operators. There are more than 1400 items available, including many unique products you won’t find elsewhere.

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Not all of the stores are participating. Here’s a look at the Essex Street Market vendors offering online delivery:

  • Luna Brothers Fruit Plaza
  • Essex Olive Oil & Spice House
  • Nordic Preserves
  • Ni Japanese Deli
  • Formaggio Essex
  • Rainbo’s Fish
  • Tra La La Juice Bar
  • Peasant Stock
  • Arancini Bros.
  • Puebla Mexican Food
  • Davidovich Bakery
  • Saxelby Cheesemongers
  • Osaka Grub
  • I.M. Pastry Studio

 

Mercato does normally charge a delivery fee, but at the moment there’s a free delivery promotion. When completing your order, you just type in, “ESSEXMKTFREE.” You might have seen the Mercato team in the market this past weekend passing out postcards to build support for the new program.

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Lauren Margolis, vendor services coordinator, told us the merchants themselves requested a delivery service. The idea was championed by Saad Bourkadi, owner of Essex Olive & Spice House, which has only been operating in the market for about six months. Margolis said it was important to everyone that at least one of three Essex Street Market groceries signed up, as well as one of two fish markets. She’s hopeful more vendors will sign on in the future. Amy Yu, a Neighborhood 360 fellow, researched delivery options and helped the vendors settle on Mercato as the best option.

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On Sunday, we stopped by the market to talk with Saad Bourkadi.  He’s taken a leadership role in coordinating the Mercato deliveries. When customers place online orders, the vendors bring items to his counter to be assembled for the delivery service.  “It’s really a wonderful thing,” said Bourkadi. “I’m in contact with every vendor. It was my way of showing some good will and being part of this community.”

Delivery is available throughout Manhattan, not just on the Lower East Side. You can schedule your delivery between the hours of 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. The market will, of course, be moving across Delancey Street to a new home as part of the Essex Crossing project next fall. Margolis said the delivery service is meant, at least in part, to give the merchants a boost during their last months in the existing facility.

Click here to check out the Essex Street Market’s online store.

Ai Weiwei’s “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors” Arrives at the Essex Street Market

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The artist Ai Weiwei will be making a big impression in New York during the next-week when his enormous citywide art exhibition, Good Fences Make Good Neighbors, makes its debut.  On the Lower East Side, as in some other neighborhoods, we’re being treated to a preview.

You may have noticed these flagpole mounted banners on the outside of the Essex Street Market. They just went up today. In collaboration with the Public Art Fund, Ai Weiwei is launching 300 artworks across he city. There are three large-scale sculptures — in Central Park, Washington Square Park and in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens. The project is meant to raise awareness of the global refugee crisis.

Here’s more about the Essex Street Market portion of the exhibition:

At the New York City Economic Development Corporation-managed Essex Street Market, which opened in the 1940s and has long been at the heart of the community, a narrative scene of banners spanning the market’s façade’s flagpoles will depict the perilous journeys of refugees, driven by threats to their survival and also by hope. These site-specific works will draw attention upward to the architecture of these lower lying buildings on the vibrant Lower East Side, a neighborhood that has been home to many immigrant groups since the 19th century.

Other Lower East Side locations include: 189 Chrystie St. (“a sign factory in the 1920s that is now home to” The Box nightclub), 248 Bowery (“a historic building dating back to pre-1830), Cooper Union and 48 7th St. (the street where Ai lived in the 1980s).

You can read more details on the Public Art Fund’s website and in the New York Times.

 

@publicartfund #goodfences #humanflow @humanflowmovie

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A post shared by Ai Weiwei (@aiww) on

@publicartfund #goodfences #humanflow

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@publicartfund #goodfences #humanflow

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A Cooking Demo From the “Happy Healthy Latina” at the Essex Street Market

Coming up at the Essex Street Market, there’s a special cooking demonstration from chef Yadira Garcia.

She’s known as the Happy Healthy Latina, and has carved out a niche in the food world by offering an all-natural spin on the traditional dishes from her Dominican ancestry. The event is timed to coincide with National Hispanic Heritage Month.

More from the invite:

Experience the extra “zing” packed into chef Yadira’s cooking with her homemade sofrito, the heart of so many Dominican and Puerto Rican foods. Yadira’s aromatic mix of herbs and spices adds a punch — and healing element — to any dish, including everyone’s favorite arroz con habichuelas (the true meaning of comfort food!). You’ll taste this combo, plus chef Yadira’s naturally-made adobo — a surefire way to make a quick and affordable meal taste like it’s been simmering all day.

The event takes place Tuesday, Oct. 10, 6:30 p.m.It costs $15. You can register here.