#Blog 2 The Crowd

As I got off the LIRR train from at the Flushing-Main Street Stop, I immediately run into a crowd of people “squeezed” through the sidewalk. Some people wanted to stop to take a look at street vendors products, while others wanted to keep moving forward. Many stores extended their shop out to the sidewalk, making the sidewalk even more narrowed which caused the sidewalk even more clogged.

As I took a closer look at the food store, the interior condition was very alarming. Not only the light but also many other wires were all entangled together. The ceiling lamp looked like that it could drop down at any moment. There was also a little girl running around in the back, along with many sharp-edged metal sticks around her.

When I kept walking forward, I heard sounds of huckstering that are exactly the one I used to have back home. Several vendors were chatting and bargaining with customers.One old man was selling sugar-coated haws with a small trolley. Without any fixed shop, a small bench and a small trolley was everything he had. As he loudly asked people to stop by and took a look of his stuff, several pedestrians stopped from their rush and asked the old man about his things. A woman next to man also started huckstering. With mixed Chinese and English, she was trying to get people’s attention as well.

I had a complicated feeling towards these vendors. On the one hand, I could clearly felt the inconvenience they bought to the narrow sidewalk since the sidewalk is already so crowded due to the high volume of people. On the other hand, vendors on the street will definitely have much less economic pressure in terms of renting stores, hiring stuffs, etc. When considering the holistic development of the area, it is truly hard to not sacrifice vendors’ interests while keeping the city development moving. Building a new shopping mall may attract other people to come to this area, but is also very likely to raise up the average expense as well.

Moving along Flushing Main Street, so many shops are not only small but have potential security risks. Tons of customers had made some of the stores looked even more overwhelming. Comparing to the bright and new shopping mall nearby, it is true that their target market and purpose are different from these local businesses, but when the developers are trying to expand and develop the Flushing district by bringing in new projects, maybe is necessary for them to consider the existing businesses and infrastructures first.

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~ by Andia Yu on March 3, 2019.