An innovative competition by the New York City Economic Development Corporation to attract catalytic retail businesses to Downtown Staten Island

Downtown Staten Island

At the tip of a borough of nearly 500,000 residents, Downtown Staten Island is undergoing a significant transformation. Nearly 70,000 Staten Island Ferry riders now pass through the neighborhood every day. More than 30,000 young New Yorkers are building strong artist and ethnic communities here. The world’s largest Observation Wheel will soon break ground next to the Staten Island Yankees’ stadium and the St. George ferry terminal. More than a thousand new housing units are planned for the waterfront, along with new parkland and retail investments.

Staten Island Storefronts provides a unique opportunity for retailers, restaurateurs, service providers, and entertainment venues to get in on the ground floor – it’s a race for space with more than $400,000 in prizes to be distributed to entrepreneurs and established businesses alike seeking to be a part of growing this neighborhood unlike any other in New York City.

© 2013 Kai Brinker, used under a Creative Commons Attribution license

More than $400,000 in prizes

New York City Economic Development Corporation ("NYCEDC") has established a fund of $425,000 in prizes to be awarded to eligible businesses opening new storefronts in existing spaces located within the Eligibility Zone of Downtown Staten Island on a first-come-first-served basis:

For dry goods retailers or services providers

Prizes for food services applicants

For leases of 5,000 square feet or more

Winners will not only get cash to help open their new storefronts, but will also be recognized by NYCEDC and the Staten Island Storefronts Advisory Committee as stewards of a new downtown.

The Race for Space

Our goal is to fill storefronts in Downtown Staten Island with businesses ready to commit to being a part of the neighborhood and invest in its future. Almost anyone can apply, and almost any storefront is eligible, provided that:

  • The space is an existing storefront in Downtown Staten Island
  • A lease is signed within 3 months of award and is at least 3 years in length
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  • Annual rent is equal to or greater than the prize amount OR planned capital investments in permanent space improvements are at least twice the prize amount
  • The applicant is not an ineligible type of business
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  • The applicant is not an ineligible type of business
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Additionally, applicants must demonstrate that award money will leverage private investment, which may be demonstrated through annual rent equal to or greater than the prize amount, permanent space improvements of twice the award amount, or other means.

Upon submission, any application that meets these criteria and demonstrates its ability to follow through will be awarded a prize. Winners will be notified within approximately 2 weeks of submission of their application. Prizes will be distributed until the money runs out.

© 2013 Patrick Nouhailler, used under a Creative Commons Attribution license

Timeline & Selection

June 24, 2013, 12:00 Noon: The Race Begins
Applications accepted online
September 30, 2013: The Finish Line
Applications accepted until 12:00 Noon
All Winners will be notified of their prize within approximately 2
weeks of submission and will sign a Winners Agreement
Early November: Awards Ceremony
Winners announced publicly