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Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Downtown Residents Rail Against 'Disruptive' Street Fairs
Downtown residents say street fairs generate noise, traffic and garbage, harming local businesses.

A fair on Murray Street in TriBeCa last summer. (Flickr/NK Eide)
By Julie Shapiro
DNAinfo Reporter/Producer
February 14, 2011-LOWER MANHATTAN — Street fair season is still a few months away, but arguments are already breaking out downtown about the value of the schlock-and-greasy-food fests.
Detractors complain that the fairs generate noise, traffic and garbage, harming local businesses and reducing residents’ quality of life. Supporters argue that the fairs are worth the inconvenience because they boost the cash-starved nonprofits that sponsor them.
Further complicating matters, Community Board 1, the organization charged with weighing the pros and cons of the street fairs and issuing an advisory opinion on them, plans to raise about $30,000 this year by sponsoring seven of its own fairs.
CB1 will use the money to pay for office supplies and equipment, and also to keep a buffer against threatened city budget cuts, said Noah Pfefferblit, district manager of CB1.
"Unfortunately our city funds are not sufficient to meet our needs," Pfefferblit said in an e-mail.
Other organizations that sponsor street fairs downtown include the New York City Police Museum, the New York City Coalition Against Hunger, Chabad of Wall Street, the Independence Plaza Tenants Association and the 1st Precinct Community Council.
Good causes or not, many people downtown loathe the fairs
Read more: http://www.dnainfo.com/20110214/downtown/downtown-residents-rail-against-disruptive-street-fairs#ixzz1E1a1K8Pm

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