Rumor: 50 Bowery Owner Alex Chu will Raze Jing Fong Restaurant for Hotel Extension
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This would be a game-changer, if proven true.
Rumor has it that the Chinatown Arcade on the Bowery, south of Canal Street, is in the opening stages of re-development. The recent departures of Sunshine 27 and A-Wah we reported last week are but the beginning. Pawns in the proverbial chess game being played by neighborhood property owner Alex Chu.
Word on the street is that businesses in this commercial complex are now unable to secure long-term leases. Apparently, Chu (vis-a-vis corporate shell China Arcade LLC) is bent on offering only one- to two-year leases in anticipation of the future. Yes. That’s allegedly the timeframe we’re hearing before the mall is demolished and re-developed.
One need only look at the nearly-complete Joie de Vivre hotel monstrosity next door at 50 Bowery. Notice how the southerly exposure of the glass tower is smooth and without windows. That’s the truest signal of preparations for an adjacent skyscraper in kind. Sources allege that Chu will probably raze the Arcade and erect a hotel extension. But before any of that, the Joie de Vivre hotel needs to open and generate more capital.
Sources also maintain that Jing Fong probably isn’t going anywhere, and will likely move into the hotel as its anchor business.
China Arcade LLC, the shell company for Chu, has been the owner here since 2001.