Pearl River Flooding its Banks

Crain’s is reporting that Pearl River owner Ching Yeh Chen is expanding her store in Soho.

The Asian-goods importer leased 10,000 additional square feet at 477 Broadway, between Grand and Broome streets, with plans to add a third floor to the location. The new retail space will offer more big-ticket items such as bed sets and antique replications, as well as wholesale goods.

Crain’s attributes Pearl River’s success to the uniqueness of its goods in its Soho neighborhood. Which makes the department store’s move from Chinatown–where it started as a self-proclaimed “Maoist mom-and-pop shop”–an act of genius in retrospect, and not just an excuse to up its prices.

And brings up another long-standing question, which we’re a little too lazy to research right now: Why haven’t all of the retail neighborhoods broken up? What’s up with New York’s medieval-seeming tendency to bunch certain kinds of retail up in one place?

– Tom McGeveran Pearl River Flooding its Banks