There appears to be yet another sweetheart deal in the Bronx, this time for FreshDirect, the local grocery delivery giant.
Dan Beekman, of the New York Daily News broke the tale of the deal which pitted New York against New Jersey (a story as old as time itself) both of which offered $100 million+ in benefits to lure the grocer. A total of approximately $130 million in grants, tax credits, etc will be given to FreshDirect. This will sweeten the incentive for the company to stay within the city by moving its quarters in Long Island City where it is currently cramped for space, up to the Harlem River Rail Yards just south of Melrose in the Port Morris neighborhood in a new $112 million building that the company will construct.
Almost 2,000 jobs will be kept in New York State as a result of the deal and will bring about 1,000 new jobs by 2020 to the borough but will is this a good deal for Bronxites?
The only way that this will positively be a win for Bronxites is to provide delivery to EVERY zip code within the Bronx. Currently, FreshDirect drives through our borough polluting our neighborhoods with their trucks to make deliveries to Riverdale/Norwood area of the Bronx. That’s it. The rest of the Bronx might as well not exist and if they’re going to plant roots in the South Bronx, they better be compelled to make deliveries in that very neighborhood as well as ALL neighborhoods of our borough. It is very insulting to each and every Bronxite that we are not “good enough” for them to deliver to us yet they will blaze through the Bronx to make deliveries in Westchester County and Southern Fairfield County in Connecticut.
I welcome FreshDirect with open arms but ONLY if they do right by the people of the Bronx. It is our land and neighborhoods that will be affected by an increase in truck traffic as they make their deliveries to affluent neighborhoods. For now, I’ll stick with my local green grocers, Downtown Bronx Deli and La Finquita - at least they’re local business owned by local Melrose residents.
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