Mayor and SBS Celebrate Business Improvement Districts with Almost $7 Million in Investments

Image Credit: Small Business Services

On May 6, 2024, Mayor Eric Adams and Small Business Services Commissioner Kevin D. Kim announced new investments to support business improvement districts (BIDs) and community-based organizations. Since 2022, the Adams administration has invested over $27 million for BIDs, merchant organizations, and other community-based development organizations. 

The Fiscal Year 25 Executive Budget includes $5.3 million in grants for helping drive tourism and consumers to commercial corridors, storefront businesses, and neighborhood institutions citywide. The grants will be organized for three programs: merchant organizing, BID formation, and small BID grant programs. 

The city is establishing a new “Trusted Partner” program to streamline and remove burdensome requirements and support BIDs with rising insurance premiums. The program will receive $500,000 and Small Business Services will also offer technical assistance for BIDs struggling to obtain insurance. 

The City’s “Connected Corridors” program is a unique partnership between the city, the Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development, and the Urban Design Forum. The partnership will provide funding and technical assistance to BID partners in under-invested corridors. The partnership will help BIDs develop districtwide public realm vision plans, lighting projects, and other activations. The three BIDs participating in the 2024 program are 161st Street BID, Bronx; Pitkin Avenue BID, Brownsville, Brooklyn; and Sunnyside Shines BID, Sunnyside, Queens. The program is made possible by an over $1 million commitment from National Grid Foundation and Small Business Services, with additional support from the Charles H. Revson Foundation, the NYC Green Relief & Recovery Fund, and Deutsche Bank. 

In addition, Small Business Services released a new report analyzing the economic output of BIDs in FY 2023. The report found that BIDs invested $194 million into their neighborhoods and supported nearly 300 miles of commercial corridors and almost 24,000 storefront businesses. The BIDs held over 4,500 events drawing in over 25.8 million participants, and installed 235 miles of holiday lighting. The BIDs improved the safety of their neighborhoods with supplemental public safety staffing across 190 linear miles with neighborhood patrols, security cameras, more lighting, pedestrian traffic management, and other supportive services for the community. BIDs also helped beautify their neighborhoods, with $16.9 million invested for maintaining 26,303 streetscape elements like tree pits, planters, and public art installations. BIDs helped remove almost four million trash bags of litter, and cleaned 400,000 instances of graffiti. 

Mayor Adams stated, “Small businesses and commercial corridors are the lifeblood of New York City’s thriving economy. Since the start of our administration, we have invested more than $27 million in BIDs and other community development organizations through SBS, and today, we are investing almost $7 million more. As we celebrate New York City Small Business Month, we’re proud to strengthen our decades-long partnerships with New York City BIDs, make our commercial corridors more vibrant and safer, and drive economic opportunity across our communities.”

Small Business Services Commissioner Kim stated, “SBS is proud to oversee New York City’s 75 BIDs, which serve over 300 miles of commercial corridors and provide crucial support for the small businesses that form the foundation of our city’s neighborhood economies. This ‘NYC BID Day’ we aren’t just celebrating 40 years of partnership with our BIDs, but ensuring that their impact and reach continues to grow through important and innovative programs. I want to thank Mayor Adams, Deputy Mayor Torres-Springer, Deputy Mayor Joshi, ‘New’ New York Executive Director B. J. Jones, and Chief Public Realm Officer Ya-Ting Liu for continuing to invest in the BIDs that have done so much to make New York the ‘City of Yes’ for small business.”

By: Veronica Rose (Veronica is the Editor of CityLand and a New York Law School graduate, Class of 2018.)




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