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Retail Watch

Inspired by the Upper West Side, downtown and Upper East Side community boards are talking about measures that would change retail zoning to allow for small stores and mom-and-pop retail. Community Board 8 (East Side from 59th to 96th streets) plans merely to discuss the UWS proposal; a community board 3 subcommittee is considering a "special purpose district" meant to limit new bars, restaurants, chains, and banks in the neighborhood. CB 3 is also considering fees for large chain retailers, which would then be funneled back to the owners of smaller businesses. [NYP]