Will New Amsterdam Market return to South Street Seaport?
The beloved locavore food market faces off against potential commercial redevelopment. Here are three ways to show your support.
Wed Mar 13 2013
One of the few bright spots in the otherwise underwhelming South Street Seaport historic area has been the seasonal New Amsterdam Market, a smartly curated outdoor local-food bazaar that features a lineup of top-notch purveyors, like Mast Brothers Chocolate and Sullivan Street Bakery, plus fresh hauls from nearby farms. Since the market's inception in 2005, its plan has been to eventually set up a permanent indoor market in the city-owned Fulton Fish Market space (namely, the Tin and New Amsterdam buildings), which has stood empty since 2005, when the fishmongers moved to a new facility in the Bronx.
We've been hounding New Amsterdam Market's Robert LaValva about when the market will return this year, but the organization is focused on trying to preserve public ownership of the buildings, and with it the chance to fulfill its original mission. The use of South Street Seaport is currently under review by NYC's Economic Development Corporation (nycedc.com), and there's the possibility of rezoning and handing over the New Amsterdam Building (which lies outside the landmarked district) to commercial development. If that happens, LaValva said he would reevaluate whether to continue at that location.
New Amsterdam is asking the public to get behind them and lend their voices in support. Find out more about the campaign at newamsterdammarket.org, and if you want to help get involved by:
1. Signing this e-petition.
2. Contacting the city council. E-mails and phone numbers are provided on this New Amsterdam Market website.
3. Attending the only public hearing on this issue tomorrow, March 14 at 9:30am in the vicinity of City Hall. For details, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. You won't need to speak—there will be plenty of testimony on both sides—but your presence will send a message that New Yorkers give a hoot about what happens to the area.