For the past few months the former martial arts studio that fronts Tramway Plaza on the Manhattan side of the Queensboro Bridge has been empty and looking for a new tenant. This week the owner finally placed a large “For Lease” sign over the property.
The question is why is that property not moving when it appears to have a built in consumer base with the local neighborhood and the Tram traffic that crosses in front of it each morning and night? I have toyed in my mind what type of store I’d love to see go in there. The answers have ranged from a specialty foods establishments to a good deli. Some establishment where you can either grab a bite or pick up something which can be prepared at home certainly sounds good. Deliveries to the location would be a real pain for the tenant.
For all I know the landlord specifically does not want a food related tenant and wants a standard retailer which would not invite all the food related ills that other local restaurants had had to deal with (i.e. Serendipity III). But one can dream. Yes a food establishment woudl be in competition to the planned food related space at 425 Main Street. But competition and more choices are a good thing.
If the RIHS did not set up the Visitor’s Center in the former Trolley Kiosk on the Island the location would have been perfect to start a Roosevelt Island Tourism Center from which tours and specialty goods could have been sold from. Perhaps a diner themed and named the “Blackwell’s Island Diner and Penitentiary”?