Shoppers and protesters greeted the opening of the A/X Armani Exchange store in City Point in Downtown Brooklyn Saturday, reported the Local blog of the New York Times. Signs carried by protesters said the upscale retail development is a waste of taxpayer money. “This isn’t for us. Why would we support something we can’t afford?” asked Farragut Houses resident Nashaun Taylor, a protester with Families United for Racial and Economic Equality, or FUREE. “This store represents gentrification.” Union members from sheet metal workers Local 361 also participated, and said the developers had not used union labor to construct the building. A City Point spokesman responded that more than 80 percent of the construction jobs during Phase I went to workers from Brooklyn, and that more than half of the contractors used on the project were women- or minority-owned businesses. Armani Exchange is the first store to open at the center. Century 21 plans to open there by 2015.
Armani Opening Spurs Local Protest [NY Times]
Photo by the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership