Duane Reade Opening at 225 Lafayette on July 31

Posted on: July 27th, 2010 at 6:33 am by

Just in case you didn’t already feel surrounded by the Duane Reade empire, get ready for the extravagant new mall-sized “flagship” outpost coming to the corner of Lafayette and Spring Street. Large posters on site advertise the official July 31 (Saturday) opening date. And store signage is now secured above the entrance.

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From street level, the interior looks more like a fancy department store with thirty-foot ceilings than a drug store.  Duane Reade is definitely pushing to go upscale.  But can we expect the same sub-par service and long register lines that plague every other location? We’ll soon find out.

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Prior to Duane Reade, 225 Lafayette (aka 60 Spring) was rented to the sole U.S. location of denim purveyors Parasuco.  The boutique shuttered back in April, and work on the drugstore has continued ever since.  Long before any of these companies occupied the space, it was the home of the East River Savings Bank.

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Founded in 1848, the East River Savings Bank is often considered one of the city’s oldest banks.  By the time 225 Lafayette was built in 1927, the then eighty-year-old financial institution moved into the ground floor.  The structure itself was designed by Cass Gilbert, the same architect behind the iconic Woolworth Building.  Two decades later, E.C. Comics had offices on the seventh floor.  The comic book company was responsible for some of the greats, including Mad and Tales from the Crypt. In 2004, however, this rich history was converted into overpriced condo living.

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