Aurora principal Jared Epstein caused an uproar last August when he fallaciously described Gansevoort Street as “blighted“. Now, Aurora Capital and Gottlieb Real Estate, the developers of the proposed massive Gansevoort project, seem to be doing their best to make that description a reality.
Macellaria, the Italian restaurant at 48 Gansevoort Street much beloved in the community, has just been forced to close. Macellaria actually wanted to remain in their location as long as possible, and asked to stay open on a month-by-month lease. Despite the fact that this would have enabled the developers to continue to generate income from this property and it will be many months – at a minimum – before any construction can begin, Aurora and Gottlieb said “No.” They gave Macellaria no option except to close.
Rapha Racing at 64 Gansevoort Street is about to close because they lost their lease, and Sugar Factory at 46 Gansevoort St. has been vacant for several months. The Gansevoort Market at 52 Gansevoort St. is currently thriving, but we’ve been told that Aurora/Gottlieb plans to evict them as soon as their lease expires.
We recently heard that the developers are conducting a telephone “push poll” encouraging community residents to support their project on the grounds that these landmarked buildings are in bad shape.. It appears that Aurora and Gottlieb are now going out of their way to make the block look as decrepit as possible – even if it means they have to lose income – in order to make it easier for them to argue that this historic block is not worth preserving.