Monday, April 12, 2010

Schwartz for Rent

In August 2008, I took a tour of the shuttered Schwartz funeral home on Second Avenue, thanks to the founder's great-grandson, Andy.

I wrote about the funeral home's long and interesting history (Ethel and Julius Rosenberg were memorialized here) and reported that a Duane Reade was planning a move into the space. Then the economy crashed, things changed. The space stayed empty.

This week, a sign appeared on the facade: "Extraordinary retail space for lease."



Extraordinary is right. Too extraordinary to be a Duane Reade. How about a theater? Or a permanent house of worship for Reverend Billy? Or...?



P.S. A couple other changes on the block have happened since that last post. Max Brenner is now an HSBC bank and Tasti-D-Lite is an eyeglass store.

5 comments:

cat said...

Um, so, I gather they have some discretion over who they rent/lease it to. Couldn't they have nixed the whole Duane Reade idea to begin with? I guess a dollar is a dollar, but, if on the one hand, you're professing to appreciate what a great space it is, then, someone has to take a stand in this city, no? (And not just do things because they can but hold out for the right tenant.)

cat said...

I just read the previous article and comments so clearly others felt this way too. I know it's complex but it's just too few ready to take a stand. Yes, it's true, they are not like greedy landlord corporations that are raking the money in - I assume - who are like vampires on the soul of our city, but, at the same time...

EV Grieve said...

A permanent house of worship for Reverend Billy is interesting, but Chase next door may have something to say about that!

Goggla said...

A performance space would be great.

No chance of another funeral home? It seems to me those are always in demand.

Jeremiah Moss said...

we're in a different economy than 2 years ago. thrift stores and used bookshops are opening in the east village. seems like anything could actually happen. maybe a theater co. with deep(ish) pockets will find this spot and love it.