LOWER EAST SIDE — The Lower East Side’s 24-year-old Business Improvement District has a new look — and a new name.
“A BID is a limited term,” Tim Laughlin, president of the partnership, told DNAinfo New York. “We made the decision to have our name reflect the work we are doing to improve the community.”
This revamped image is not the only change underway in the Lower East Side.
Nine formerly empty lots within Essex Crossing are the center of a major redevelopment in the neighborhood. The developers, Delancey Street Associates, plan to create 1.9 million square feet of commercial, residential and community space.
NYU Langone Medical Center also recently announced plans to operate a 55,000 square-foot facility at the site.
“Any time you introduce nine new, transformative buildings in the community, there’s going to be a change,” said Laughlin. “The mission of the partnership is to improve the quality of life of the community.”
Laughlin said the new developments will increase foot traffic and act as drivers for the local economy.
The partnership has already formalized its relationship with the Essex Street Market, which will find a new home in the Essex Crossing development by 2018.
Laughlin acknowledged the neighborhood’s resistance to new nightlife and desire for greater commercial diversity.
“I’d argue that there’s always going to be [nightlife],” he says. “But I think that our overall retail landscape is diversifying and continues to be unique to this community. “
Despite the name change, the partnership will continue to function and provide the same services to area businesses — cleaning, marketing and advertising — as it had under its old moniker.