From the Dept. of ‘I told you so’: Barclays a mixed blessing for businesses

Not pictured: millions of dollars pouring into the local economy

Not pictured: millions of dollars pouring into the local economy

I understand that as the only person on staff at Brokelyn who gives a damn about sports, my attitude towards the LIBOR Barclays Center was a little suspect, since I only cared that it was the Nets coming to Brooklyn. But I also had a hard time swallowing the idea that all the businesses in its footprint would be lifted by a tide of money from suburbanites and basketball fans visiting from Boston, and guess what? According to the Daily News, I was right. Guess who thinks he should get to be mayor now?

It’s not to say that none of the businesses in the area have seen a boost from the arena. Predictably, bars and restaurants told the News that they’ve seen an uptick in crowds. Some of the bars aren’t even in the footprint of the space egg arena, like Brooklyn Tap House, where an amazed manager said they get a big pre-game crowd despite not being walking distance from Barclays.

But aside from bars, local businesses aren’t seeing those Ratner-bucks. The owner of Cake Ambiance on the other hand, didn’t have anything nice to say. Jude Nwabuoko blamed people not stopping in at his bakery on the fact that there are places to eat in Barclays and people can just go back to their train without walking through the neighborhood. The News also spoke to a sports sociologist who predicted the end of the corner stores and hardware store near the stadium. Which should get residents up in a lather, because while bars are great, sometimes you need to buy a power strip, and a bar just can’t sell you one of those.

If the Nets really want to encourage shopping in the community, it couldn’t hurt to take a page out of Williamsburg Cinema’s book and try to cut some kind of ticket stub deal with a few non-bar businesses. It also couldn’t hurt them to politely ask Reggie Evans not to talk to reporters ever again.

8 Comment

  • Correction: You are the only person on Team Brokelyn who gives a damn about basketball. Which doesn’t even count since it’s a game and not a sport and every basketbal game could be decided in five minutes and 35 ticky tack foul calls.

    • FOUL.
      I mean you definitely got me there
      Oh no, don’t give me that look,
      c’mon, check the ball up. check the ball up.

  • Have you ever been to cake ambiance? It looks awful. They advertise FREE WIFI on the windows in taped on letters.

    How about asking 67 burger or Hot Bird how they’re doing. Purbird has got to be seeing an uptick, right? You choose one of the most unimpressive looking local businesses about how they’re doing and of course they’re going to be bitter.

  • can i bring my gluten free macrobiotic tempeh salad to the game?