A new Apple store to arrive on Madison Avenue and East 74th Street has all but been confirmed as a reality for almost a year. But recently, some local opposition has bubbled up from neighbors who say the store will "create serious disruption in a quiet residential community," as scrawled on a five-page pamphlet by the group, Saving The 74th Street Residential Neighborhood. George Osborne of the group, and a series of other residents from the area spoke out against Apple's foreseen move to the U.S. Mortgage & Trust Co. building at 940 Madison Avenue at a community meeting last night, in which the store was not on the agenda.
The neighbors had no beef with Apple itself, just the location, predicting swarms of Apple customers taking up the narrow sidewalks, at times camping out for new devices, followed up by food trucks. "This store is the wrong store in this neighborhood," said one resident, adding, "no one on Madison has this kind of high traffic customers." Another added, "Anyone who lives in this neighborhood has seen what happened to the Metropolitan Museum," echoing the poster board set up showing Apple crowds and empanada trucks. Others referred to Apple's iconic glass cube at 59th Street and Fifth Avenue nearby, asking, "What's the need?"
Other new Apple locations have been confirmed for the World Trade Center, Williamsburg, and the Queens Mall to join the five existing stores in Manhattan. But Apple itself hasn't officially announced the site at 940 Madison Avenue, where construction is underway. The site sits across from the former Whitney Museum of American Art, where construction is also ongoing. The enduring lack of transparency has lent to a vibe of secrecy. A construction worker allegedly told resident Denise Rogers, "It's going to be an Apple Store but don't tell anyone."
The Save 74th Street Residential Neighborhood group says it has almost one thousand signatures for a petition against the location. The group also drafted a resolution for the Community Board 8, but the board said it will take it up in a future meeting after doing its diligence to notify the community and Apple itself. A source from the board, unable to speak on its behalf, said the facade of the 12,580-square-foot building, formerly hosting the United States Mortgage and Trust Company, will not be changed, and Apple will be a relatively boutique store compared to other locations.
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· All Apple coverage [Curbed]