Author Topic: Recession Observations, Speculation  (Read 2338 times)

Offline Mallory

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Recession Observations, Speculation
« on: February 25, 2009, 10:00:36 PM »
Not sure what the proper economic indicators for how Jackson Heights is affected, or what the future could hold; no predictions either.  But here are some general observations and speculation from a 2 year resident.  (I moved in when it was still ok to pay above the asking price, which I did)

- When I got here there were already a lot of empty shops on 37th between 90th and 74th.  The biggest difference I notice now are the number of people eating in the restaurants.  It doesn't seem quite as bad as Manhattan, where I see lots of completely empty restaurants at dinner time.  (Have noticed more dinner specials in Jackson Heights, which are nice.)

- There's some in-progress construction that I hope gets finished up.  A new building on Junction (which sorely needs some better places), a few projects around 74th, the plot of land where the old torn down adult theater was on 37th around 93rd, and others.  Really would like to see some nice new construction.  Not sure if these will pan out though.  Also, I have high hopes for the new development areas around Flushing and Shea trickling back towards us at some point.

- 7 train service seems close to what it was during rush hour.  Ridership seems about the same as it was two years ago.  The one thing I most worried about is the psychological effects of increased graffiti on trains.  This seems like it could go a long way to drive thin-skinned people out of NYC as a whole, not to mention Queens.

- Oddly, real estate prices don't appear to be plummeting just yet.  Things look like they are selling at prices similar to the market in 2005.  Probably not a lot of fast moving 500k 2bds, but they haven't fallen to 2000 prices when those same places were half as much.  Rental prices seem to be holding steady.  I am also always surprised to see how much money people are asking for places above Northern Blvd, which can be quite far from any subway.

- A little worried about the quality of schools, ongoing.  But not a lot of experience here yet.  Soon though.

- The streets (save Junction Blvd) seem about as clean as ever, with the exception of dog poop, which seems to be getting worse.  If you want to know how bad it could get, visit East Elmhurst.

So...those are one individual's casual observations.  Would be interested to hear if others have noticed potentially recession-linked changes within the last several months, and if there is any speculation about what Jackson Heights could look like 3 years from now. 

And as a final digression -- anyone who was in NY for the 6 or so months post 9/11/2001 has been through this before.  (Joblessness, stock market implosion, and a pervasive sense of uncertainty)  In some ways these times were scarier for NYers specifically.  Times are scary now, but the problems are different too.  Looking forward to others' thoughts here.

Offline Shelby2

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2009, 11:03:54 AM »
This is a thoughtful post and I'm curious to hear others' opinions too, especially from those who have been in JH or in NYC for the long haul.

I haven't noticed any differences on the streets of JH that could be attributable to the recession, and I've been in this neighborhood for three years.  Asking prices on coops in this neighborhood are slightly higher today than what they were three years ago; I don't know about selling prices.

But reading and watching the news every day does make me worried.  When a store goes out of business, instead of wondering what will go in next, now I wonder if it will remain vacant.  When I ride a crowded train, I wonder what riding that same train will be like if service is cut back.

Most of the news I've seen has been very doom and gloom, however, I did see one story on tv that suggested this could be a good time to open a small business if that's what you've always wanted to do.  Unfortunately I can't remember the reasoning behind it.

Offline Queenskid

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #2 on: February 26, 2009, 11:33:53 AM »
I've been in JH practically my whole life--50+ years.  Right now, JH and NYC seem to be doing alright, but the economic downturn will probably hit us soon and when it does I'm afraid things may deteriorate quickly.  I just read an article about condo prices in Manhattan dropping, and when I was in Chelsea last week I saw too many empty storefronts.

My experience over the years is that Jackson Heights was always recession resistant because of the influx of new immigrants who were relatively well off.  New people with money were always there to rent an empty store or buy a house that was for sale.  That always kept the neighborhood's head above water.  I've noticed the same phenomenon in Flushing.  Now, however, I'm worried that if the global economy takes a real hit this Jackson Heights safety net may disappear.  Hopefully whatever downturn we face will be balanced by the influx of new residents who care about the community--witness this site--and who will work hard to preserve it.

Offline leoooog

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2009, 02:54:25 PM »
Linking to Brian Lehrer's Uncommon Economic Indicators project seems appropriate. People submit observations pertaining to the effects of recession in their neighborhood. The only Jackson Heights-related entry, as far as I can tell, relates to homeless people living at the 74th Street subway stations.

Offline normelrod

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2009, 11:22:03 PM »
I just wrote a whole post on my blog about how the recession seems to be affecting Jackson Heights. Things look to be going downhill, given all the empty storefronts. And I think they will get worse before they get better. Anyway, here's the link if you're interested...

http://www.joblessandless.com/2009/02/jackson-heights-lows-the-recession-comes-to-town/


Offline Shelby2

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #5 on: February 27, 2009, 12:39:47 AM »
I just wrote a whole post on my blog about how the recession seems to be affecting Jackson Heights. Things look to be going downhill, given all the empty storefronts. And I think they will get worse before they get better. Anyway, here's the link if you're interested...

http://www.joblessandless.com/2009/02/jackson-heights-lows-the-recession-comes-to-town/

When did Yofiore close?

Offline normelrod

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #6 on: February 27, 2009, 09:40:22 AM »
Yofiore closed around the end of January. Now it seems that Yogurberry is setting up shop. I don't know what makes them think they'll have any more success in that location.

Offline Chuckster

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Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2009, 11:59:29 AM »
The Village Voice blogs about an increase in illegal gambling seen in some immigrant communities....gambling as a means to supplement income. 

The Village Voice Blogs
Among New York's Bangladeshis, a Boom in Underground Gambling
By Emily Brady
Friday, May. 22 2009 @ 8:00AM

With the economy in a coma, members of the city's working class immigrant community have been hit hard in various ways. In Woodside, Queens, for instance, some unemployed Latino day laborers have taken to sleeping in the streets. Among the Bangladeshi community, remittances home have plummeted. And according to the Bangla newspaper Weekly Thikana, increasing numbers of Bengali immigrants are turning to gambling to supplement their income.

In the article translated into English by The New York Community Media Alliance, the paper claims illegal gambling joints have popped up in basements and the backs of grocery stores in Kensington, Brooklyn (also home to some great Bengali food) and various Queens neighborhoods, including Jackson Heights and Ozone Park.

Earlier this month, three members of a local community organization were arrested, presumably for gambling. And in a police roundup a few years back, the article claims the NYPD arrested nearly 30 Bangladeshi gamblers, and "tied them up with rope around their waists and sent them to court."

Strangely enough, the only gambler interviewed in the article sounded like it was more lonesomeness than poverty that drove him to the tables: "We have been addicted to gambling out of mental ache," he said. "We have no green card, no work, so what else do we have than this gambling to spend our time?"
The Chuckster has spoken!

Jackson Heights Life

Re: Recession Observations, Speculation
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2009, 11:59:29 AM »