East Villagers are really up in arms over an impending Starbucks headed to 125 Saint Marks Place at Avenue A.
Neighbors have a rally planned for this afternoon to protest the mega-chain, which so far has steered clear of the area east of First Avenue. DNAinfo talked to a slew of business owners and neighborhood organizations that argue the coffee giant will drive out smaller businesses. Owner of Three Seats Espresso Aaron Cook says: “If it’s gonna be more and more like that, the area is finished basically — it might as well be another Midtown.”
Starbucks swears it will feel totally local. They’re designing the store “to reflect the uniqueness of the neighborhood” and plan to donate leftovers to local non-profits, the corporation says.
Still, that line isn’t soothing the fears of locals, with owners of longtime spots like Tompkins Square Bagels saying that they fear they’ll lose their leases. The East Village is contending with chain proliferation in more ways than one lately — Community Board 3 has proposed a special zoning district in hopes of cutting down on big-box stores.