We’ve been keeping a close watch on the situation at Pathmark, the large grocery store at 227 Cherry Street that’s closing at the end of this year. Today local elected officials have sent a letter to Pathmark’s CEO, Sam Martin, and to F. Roy Schoenberg of Cheery Street LLC, the property owner. The letter was signed by State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, City Council member Margaret Chin, State Senator Daniel Squadron and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer. Here’s the full text:
We are writing to you to express our deep concern about the planned closure of the Pathmark store at 227 Cherry Street on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. As the elected officials who represent this area, we know that Pathmark plays a crucial role in the lives of thousands of residents of this neighborhood, many of them elderly and low-income. The Lower East Side community is already underserved when it comes to full service supermarkets offering fresh, affordable food. Our constituents would face a significant burden if they lost a grocery store in this location, which is the only affordable food option within a reasonable distance. In 2007, when similar plans were proposed, our community rallied in support of our Pathmark. That urgent need remains today. If there is to be a new development at 227 Cherry Street, it is imperative that it include a low-cost, full service supermarket of comparable size to the current Pathmark. Further, we ask that Pathmark’s closure be postponed until such a development is shovel-ready to prevent the unnecessary creation of a food desert. It is our hope to work collaboratively with you and your companies to make this transition as seamless and beneficial as possible for the surrounding community residents. As such, we would like to set up a meeting to discuss this matter further.
A large residential development, apparently with a ground-floor grocery, is planned for the Pathmark site. The Two Bridges Neighborhood Council is planning a rally in front of the store next Wednesday at 11 a.m.