We reported last month that the boutique clothing store Theory was moving from 71st Street and Columbus Avenue to 69th and Columbus, the old spot of makeup store Lancome. It was supposed to take a couple of months for the move to go down, but it turns out Theory has already vacated the 71st Street spot and set up shop on 69th. That means any minute now the Upper West Side will get its first Helmut Lang in the space vacated by Theory on 71st — only the second one in the city. (Helmut Lang and Theory are now owned by the same company).
Suddenly, it seems like Madison Avenue has moved to the Upper West Side. In just the last two years, Columbus Avenue has become a high-end shopping destination, with Rag & Bone, the French store Comptoirs des Cotonniers, Burberry, Paige Denim and other boutiques moving into stores between 66th and 72nd Streets. Soon, they’ll be ticketing people for wearing sweatpants.
For more recent neighborhood openings and closings, click here.
Photos by Avi.
There was an earlier attempt to turn Columbus Ave into Madison Ave. In the late 1980’s, just before the 1987 stock market crash, several Madison Ave stores decided it was a good time to sell $200 shirts on the UWS. All those stores were gone within 2 years, as most of the neighborhood could more afford an ice cream cone than designer clothing. Is this a genuine shift of the population or a warning about the next serious recession?