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National chains ditch Manhattan and head for the outer boroughs

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But Manhattan still has more chains than any other borough

If it seems like an awful lot of chain stores have been popping up in the outer boroughs lately, that’s because they are. The Real Deal reports that the number of national retailers has, in fact, increased this year in every borough but one: Manhattan, where the number of national chains has actually dipped slightly, according to a new report from the Center for an Urban Future.

The Bronx saw the biggest shift: a 4.2 percent increase year-over-year in number of chain stores in the borough, jumping from 857 stores to 893. Staten Island came in second, with a 3.7 YOY increase (406 to 421). Brooklyn saw a minor uptick of 2.3 percent, and Queens got a 1.6 percent increase. Manhattan, on the other hand, actually saw a .9 percent decrease in the number of national chains, going from a whopping 7,243 to a (still whopping) 7,154. Manhattan accounts for 37 percent of the city’s national chains.

But while chain growth in the city is up for the eight straight year, there are signs it may be slowing, the report suggests. Only one out of five chains on this year’s list “increased their footprint in the city by at least one store over the past year,” for example. Last year, it was one in three. About a third of the chains actually closed locations this past year, while the rest held steady, closing 2016 with the same store count as last year.

The big winners this year: Dollar Tree, which experienced the most growth of any chain in the city; Crunch; Sprint; Family Dollar; CVS; Popeye’s; Domino’s Pizza; Dunkin’ Donuts; Starbucks; and 7-Eleven.

Retailers who didn’t have such a banner 2016: Tim Horton’s, which closed half its NYC locations; Nine West; Aerosoles (a rough year for shoes?); The Children’s Place; FedEx Office; Staples; Foot Locker (see?); GameStop; McDonald’s; and Subway.

And let us take a moment to remember the national chains the city bid a final farewell to in 2016: Hollywood Tans, Arthur Treacher's, Gordon's Jewelers, Bakers Shoes, OfficeMax, Naturalizer, Square One, Ranch One, Cache, Joyce Leslie, and Benetton. May they prosper elsewhere.