To the Editor:
We read Daisy Carrington’s look at the growing phenomenon of baby-as-billboard [“Red Diapers, Platinum Umbilical,” Nov. 14] with great interest. Clearly, it’s the parents’ responsibility to impart good values to their children, and using message-laden shirts may be one fun way to do this. When we formed babyPolitico, we did struggle over the concept of young children serving as a means for their parents to get their own political views out there. To resolve this, we decided to pursue messages that actually relate to the child who is wearing the shirt, i.e., “Every child needs a place to call home—promote affordable housing,” or “Please ensure I’m insured—support universal healthcare,” etc. By advancing the theme “activism starts early,” we try to give parents and children a voice on issues that will affect them and future generations.
Related Retail Responds
To the Editor:
In response to Matthew Schuerman’s story on the redevelopment of Bronx Terminal Market [“Battle of the Bronx Looms for Mom-and-Pop Crusader,” Nov. 14], the Related Retail Corporation has stated that there are absolutely no current plans for a Wal-Mart in the Gateway Center. It is unfortunate that Mr. Schuerman chose to insinuate his own version of the truth.
But the discussion here should not be about one tenant or another. It should be about the tremendous opportunity offered by the project, and the fact that Bronx residents want it.
The Gateway Center at Bronx Terminal Market will replace a dilapidated eyesore with a vibrant new retail center that the people of the Bronx want and deserve. The project will offer Bronx residents a wide range of retail options, ranging from popular national retailers—all of whom are already operating successful stores in New York City—to community retailers from the local area. The residents of every other borough in New York City have access to these stores. Why shouldn’t the residents of the Bronx—who have the lowest car ownership of all the boroughs—have the same access to a retail center that offers substantial mass-transit options?
Last year, Bronxites spent $13.8 billion at retail stores, but only 46 percent of it stayed in the borough because, with only a few exceptions, the Bronx does not have the national retail stores they want. As a result, more than $7 billion was spent elsewhere.
Tremendous economic activity, employment and sales tax revenue is being lost, and the people of the Bronx know it. They see popular national retail stores providing good jobs and enlivening neighborhoods everywhere but the Bronx—and they are tired of it. This is why they overwhelmingly support the project by a five-to-one margin, according to our public-opinion survey. Mr. Schuerman also omits the fact that the project has the overwhelming support of the local community board as well as the Bronx Borough President, the local member of City Council and the local Assemblywoman. Apparently, outsiders know what’s better for this community than the community itself.
Executive Vice President
Related Retail Corporation