Nike Pissed off the Lower East Side and SoHo Communities in the Same Day

Posted on: November 11th, 2016 at 5:00 am by
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It’s quite ironic that yesterday, within just a few hours, Nike was both feted and lambasted by our local government. Mere blocks from each other.

While the Parks Department channeled its gratitude (i.e. kissed the ring) toward Nike for resurfacing the Stanton Street basketball courts with designs by street artist KAWS, City Council rallied to protest their new big-box store opening today at 529 Broadway. Consider it a tale of two Nikes – placating one community with upgrades while bothering another with a five-floor sneaker emporium in an oversaturated SoHo shopping mall.

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Photo: Nike

Parks Commissioner Mitchell J. Silver held a high profile ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday evening to officially christen the new courts and hoops in Sara D. Roosevelt Park. This really pissed off the local Sara D. Roosevelt Coalition and Community Board 3, though, neither of which were alerted in advance of the overhaul. It just so happened that CB3’s Parks subcommittee met last night and discussed the matter at the outset. They gave the city a scathing earful for the lack of communication. “There’s nothing that reads bad will” like these types of actions, member and Coalition president K. Webster noted.

Earlier in the day, meanwhile, Councilwoman Margaret Chin and her political allies stood in front of the DOB offices on Broadway to “protest the broken policies and faulty decision making that led to the opening of a five-story, 55,000-sqaure-foot Niketown in the heart of one of the most congested shopping districts in the City.”

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