Photo courtesy of QuallsBenson
The Market Line, the food hall located inside the Lower East Side’s Essex Crossing development, is closing its doors on April 1. A spokesperson for developer Delancey Street Associates on Friday announced that the subterranean food hall will close this spring due to pandemic-related difficulties. A majority of the food hall’s vendors, including its anchor beer spot the Grand Delancey, have announced their exodus from the space over the last month, as Eater New York reported. Delancey Street Associates said that they’re looking at other uses for the space.
A few of the hall’s vendors attribute the closure to poor communication between the market and its vendors, as well as a lack of public outreach and signage. The pandemic also took a toll on the food hall, with foot traffic never returning to its pre-pandemic levels despite rent prices continuing to rise.
Several vendors claimed the food hall’s promises never came to fruition and blamed confusing hours of operation. While the food hall’s hours of operation listed it as open until 2 a.m. on certain days, some of its vendors closed around 8 p.m., making it hard for other businesses to generate profit during later hours, according to Eater.
Established in 2019, the Market Line featured a variety of renowned New York City establishments, including Veselka, Schaller & Weber, and Nom Wah, as well as up-and-coming vendors. Now, just a few of its original vendors remain.
The establishment is located within Essex Crossing, a six-acre $1.9 billion development that includes 1,079 residential units, 350,000 square feet of office space, 100,000 square feet of green space, and 400,000 square feet of retail space.
The food hall is below ground and adjacent to the street-level Essex Market. The closure won’t affect Essex Market, which moved into Essex Crossing in 2019 from its longtime home directly across the street due to cheaper rents for its vendors.
“The success of the Market Line has been one of our highest priorities from the beginning of Essex Crossing,” Delancey Street Associates said in an official statement. “Since the onset of the pandemic, we worked closely with Market Line vendors to help them weather a challenging economic environment, including providing rent abatements and ongoing rent deferrals. In the four years since Covid-19 and its effects on retail and food and beverage tenants, the Market Line and its vendors have continued to struggle.”