A spiral staircase in a New York City subway station.

Mike Smith in Crain’s New York Business: Transit Stations are Community Hubs

  • Insights
By The Streetsense Collective

In her recent article in Crain’s New York Business—Subway & Retail SOS—writer Caroline Spivack discusses the 83% of New York subway spaces that are now vacant after once hosting retail businesses. While Covid-19 accelerated changing consumer habits everywhere, vacant subway retail is perhaps one of the more visible examples.


In reporting how the MTA is trying to change that, Spivack spoke with a number of transit agency advisors, including Streetsense Senior Managing Director of Real Estate, Mike Smith.


“It is a different ballgame for public institutions in what kind of abilities they have,” he said. “It’s not apples to apples, for sure, and yet at the same time they’re competing for the same retail tenants that the private sector is.”


Smith goes on to note: “Stations are community hubs” … “The more we can think about them as such — as opposed to just a utilitarian place to get people in and out of — whether it’s commercial, cultural or otherwise, I think will only enhance the experience for riders.”


Read the full story on the future of transit retail in Crain’s New York Business.




The Streetsense place consulting team leverages strategic and creative advisory services to solve complex real estate issues that enhance the value of places—whether they are new mixed-use developments, assets facing challenges, vibrant districts, or captivating destinations.


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