Astoria, Community, Restaurants
Feb 23, 2018

Support Your Local 30th and 36th Avenue Businesses – the MTA Doesn’t

Our local businesses need your help!

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Image source: Adam_T4 via the WHA Flickr Pool

As you are most likely aware, the MTA’s temporary shutdown of the 30th an 36th Avenue subway stations has wrecked local business on those strips and nearby. There have been a couple of meetings between the MTA and local business owners (there was one yesterday at 2pm), but not much has come out of that, unfortunately. One constructive thing that can help is for the Astoria community to support our mom and pop businesses with your $$$.

To get an idea straight from the horse’s mouth, here are some testimonials by local business owners regarding the effects of the subway closures.

“I am personally blessed to have more than one location so other stores will pick up where 30th may dip and vice versa, but I’m hearing nightmare stories by single store owners that are disturbing. Like a 60% drop in sales.” -Peter Voyiatzis of Brooklyn Bagel, 36-14 30th Avenue, bkbagel.com | Instagram

“The city has turned its back on the very people who make the city great. This is an unfortunate event but also an opportunity for our community to come together and support each other through these tough times. This is the story of the resilience and perseverance of 30th Avenue and Astoria. With the love and support of our community, Pink Nori will lead the revolution in spreading awareness about this tragic situation and create a busier than ever 30th Avenue!” -Jesse Tang of Pink Nori, 36-06 30th Avenue. pinknorinyc.com | Instagram

“After train services shuttered, we have noticed a significant decrease in dine-in customers especially in weekday evenings. We’ve been operating here since 2001 (previously known as Yajai) and have seen it grow and change, and we love to meet the people who are making Astoria more vibrant every year. In 2016 we renovated the restaurant as we wanted to revamp the business to meet the needs of customers coming to 30th Avenue as a place to spend valuable time with their friends and family. We redesigned our dining space to create something more inviting, welcoming customers to experience our Thai hospitality and the people behind their meals.

Now that the trains have temporarily closed, we are not getting the same kind of foot traffic for people dining in after work, planning for a catch-up with friends, or stopping by to grab takeout before heading home. We pride ourselves in our food and our delivery services haven’t been impacted much, but we have definitely missed familiar faces that used to be able to pass by and share smiles on the weekdays.” -Wannarat Jarernpan of Pochana Thai, 33-16 30th Avenue, pochananyc.com | Instagram

“The MTA killed my business; revenue is down 40%+.” -Freddy Michelin of Crescent Wines & Spirits, 23-40 30th Avenue, Yelp listing

“30th Avenue at this point is virtually a ghost town. The foot traffic is gone, people who live in the area don’t have friends or family coming for brunch or dinner because it’s too much of a hassle to get here. To make matters worse, they decided to do the work during the winter and people don’t want to walk an additional 8-13 minutes in the bitter cold to grab a bite to eat.” [We hope everyone took advantage of the warm weather to stop in at your favorite 30th Ave and 36th Ave haunts! -Ed.] -George Rallis of William Hallet, 36-10 30th Avenue, williamhallet.com | Instagram

And here are some of the specials that local businesses are putting together.
We will add more as we get more information.

Astoria Coffee

“Since the 30th Ave train station closure, one thing we’re definitely trying to do is encourage more evening business to make up for the loss of morning commuter traffic. The Astoria Coffee Concert Series is the only event of its kind in the area, this series focuses on an intimate, high quality listening environment and a friendly, inviting social atmosphere. There is no cover—just come and have a few beers or glasses of wine—or coffee and tea, of course.” 30-04 30th Street. astoriacoffeeny.com | Instagram

Breakfast Shack

“In an effort to supplement some of the loss from the M-F business, we have collaborated with Benchflourbakers, another small, owner-operated Astoria business, to do a monthly pop-up Brunch Menu, incorporating different themes. This Saturday (2/24/18) is Chinese New Year! The menu includes pork & chive dumplings, scallion pancake roasted pork breakfast roll, Chinese beef stew over rice, Taiwanese pineapple cakes, and toasted almond cookies.” 30th Street and 30th Avenue at Athens Square Park. breakfastshackny.com | Instagram

Crescent Wines & Spirits

For every 4 bottles storewide you get 20% off. 23-40 30th Avenue. Yelp listing

Pink Nori

“Join us at Pink Nori for Happy Hour specials which include $3 beers and saké everyday from 3-7pm.” 36-06 30th Avenue. pinknorinyc.com | Instagram

Pochana Thai Kitchen

We have offered extremely competitive lunch and early bird dinner specials:

  • $7 lunch specials Monday through Friday, 11:30am–3:30pm. Select entrees plus an appetizer of spring rolls, vegetable soup, or house salad.
  • $12 early bird special (3 courses plus a drink) Monday through Thursday, 5–7pm

“In addition to continuing to offer our daily weekday specials, we offer opportunities for catering and private parties so customers feel like Pochana is more than just a listing on Seamless, but also a destination for friends and family to gather. Our catering menu starts at just $35 for a tray of appetizers (35 pieces minimum) for popular items like Shrimp Crisps, Chicken Sate, Jade Dumplings, and Sriracha Wings. Entrees start at $60 for a small tray of items from our noodle, fried rice, curry, and wok sections (feeds up to 7 people.) Customers who are interested should feel free to get in touch with us direct by phone (917-868-1496 for Mac), email (pochananyc@gmail.com), or Instagram (@pochananyc). We would be so happy to interact with our customers the way we used to when the trains brought the community together!” 33-16 30th Avenue. pochananyc.com | Instagram

About Meg Cotner

Meg Cotner was trained as a harpsichordist and now works as a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of "Food Lovers' Guide to Queens," and is a skilled and avid home cook, baker, and preserver.

5 Comments

Jessica

Don’t forget Michaels Shoe Repair. Love that guy and his shelves are empty!!

Reply
Tony V

We complain when the MTA let’s things fall apart and then we complain when they do something to fix the situation. Get real people, we can not have it both ways. Use one of the citibikes and visit your favorite bar restaurant.

Reply
Jimmy

Exactly…let’s be honest, delivery is more popular in winter for most of these places anyway. In a few months (during prime summer) Broadway will have its turn being closed and 30th Ave will be the only game in town. These elevated stations are over ONE HUNDRED years old…what do they expect the MTA to do? I hate the MTA and am an Astoria resident myself, but what other actually feasible options are there? Be glad we’ll have all new and updated stations soon.

Reply
Jimmy C

Although we all know how work timetables get pushed back in the city, work should be completed by spring of 2018. What do people expect the MTA to do? The stations needed rehab and they needed to be closed. I can’t speak for everyone but if I want to go somewhere I will go there. The opposite stations that are open are a 5 minute walk to 30th Avenue. I can’t understand how it’s SUCH an inconvenience for some people. There’s no easy way to fix/rehab a station and provide 24/7 transit for people.

Reply
yasss

WE NEED A COALITION. I too have spoken to many business owners who have experienced a slow in sales.
My question is: where are people going? instead of choosing convenience and going to Starbucks why not make the trip to your local coffee shop or non-commercial grocer like Sai or Broadway organics?
Stop buying all your shit on Amazon and go for a walk

Reply

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