Due to a growing operating expense and competition from online services and suburban chains, the number of family-owned corner markets and grocery stores in neighborhoods across New York City is stalling, according to a NYTimes.com real estate story by Ronda Kaysevvov.
“The neighborhood grocery store — with its dim and narrow aisles full of provisions precariously stacked from floor to ceiling and the cashier who greets you and your dog by name — is a critical piece of a New York life. Supermarkets of suburban proportions, like Whole Foods, are making their mark on the city; Wegmans will open its first city store, in Brooklyn, in 2018.
“But while these stores have distinctive — and sometimes pricier — offerings like artisanal cheese and artichoke ravioli, they cannot replace the labyrinthine corner market, a linchpin for any neighborhood. It can keep a neighborhood manageable for new parents who need diapers now or seniors who cannot carry their groceries a long way.”
Many of the city’s grocers, large and small, have struggled to survive. Some have succumbed to high rent, narrow profit margins and increased competition from upscale supermarkets, online grocers and drugstore chains that have expanded their wares to include grocery items.
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