After more than two decades of effort, Chinatown is moving closer to forming a business improvement district that would charge area property owners for added services.
The Department of City Planning is now reviewing the plan, which must be approved by the department's board of commissioners and then the City Councill. The measure so far has overcome early opposition; two previous efforts to create a district were defeated.
"It's a historic moment for Chinatown," City Council member Margaret Chin said speaking in favor of the proposal during a public hearing on Wednesday.
If it seems like the entire East River waterfront in Lower Manhattan has been under construction for years, that's because it has been. But the East River Park's promenade is no longer a mark of shame, at least not along the Lower East Side and East Village, where the renovation of the two-mile stretch of promenade between Cherry Street an 14th Street is now just about finished. And it only took six years!