OPENINGS & CLOSINGS: ROYAL SOUL FOOD, EMS, D’AGOSTINO, MORE

royal soul food

Who says the Upper West Side doesn’t have soul? Sure we do! But we’re about to have fewer sporting goods. Check out openings and closings below.

A new restaurant called Royal Soul Food is opening at 914 Columbus Avenue at 104th street. Paper was still up on the windows this week, but the sign is enticing, and it wil hopefully be open soon. Thanks to Tsadik Kaplan for the photo.

The two-story EMS in the Laureate at 76th street and Broadway announced on Thursday that it’s closing on Feb. 24 and will be having a big sale, with items up to 70% off. It will be curious to see what else will go into that spot — it can’t be a Duane Reade, one tipster noted, because there’s already a Duane Reade next door. The store opened in 2011. Thanks to Harley, Michelle, Elizabeth, Tippi, Jonathan, Gretchen and more for the tips.

ariel ground floor

Workers are doing construction inside 2628 Broadway between 99th and 100th street in the Ariel East right next to the old Metro Theater. Amy, who sent in the photo above, tells us a worker told her it would be a new urgent care location.

The D’agostino supermarket at 2828 Broadway at 110th street may close. The company sent a notice to the state labor department noting that 40 jobs at the store were in jeopardy. It’s one of three locations that sent that notice (the other two are in other neighborhoods). An executive told the Commercial Observer that at least two of the three would close. “G. Robert James, the president and chief operating officer of D’Agostino, confirmed that at least two locations could close and said a third was on the table, but declined to get into specifics.” The company did not respond to our request for comment.

FOOD, NEWS, OPEN/CLOSED | 35 comments | permalink
    1. Tom says:

      Actually saw someone measuring the corner window of EMS last week. He had a messenger bag with name of a movie theatre chain on it (for the life of me I can’t remember which one!!). No idea what it means, if anything. Just an FYI.

    2. Lisa says:

      Aww, sad to hear about EMS! It was nice to have something like that in the neighborhood without having to trek downtown to REI or whatever.

    3. Gary says:

      Another urgent care center????

      Word to the wise: even if the center is in your network, the doctor moonlighting there (or the specialist they call in to sew the stitches, etc…) may not be! You can be on the hook for thousands, just like if you went to an ER.

      You gotta be careful with those places. And given how they are popping up everywhere, be on the lookout for scams. They’re going to compete all the way to the bottom.

    4. UWSHebrew says:

      @Tom — Alamo Drafthouse Cinema was supposed to take over the Metro Theater, but it fell through. If that guy had Alamo on his messenger bag, that would be an incredible sign of hope…

    5. Paul RL says:

      Ugh…these Urgent Care centers are becoming bad for the health of the Upper West Side!

    6. Laurence P. Mitchell says:

      Are Urgent Care facilities the new “Duane Reade!?” There are already two locations in the neighborhood – SW Corner of Bway and W 104 and Bway and 102! I’m always hoping for a new commercial enterprise that would add character to the area but I am usually disappointed.

    7. robetrt says:

      The EMS ref in the article is in the 70’s, while the Metro is on 99th.

      Pls be advised that the latest “great deal”
      to repurpose the metro is dead. No lease, change of ownership and/or permits have been filed with the city. This is after there were a series if site visits by folks from an engineering firm Remember there is nothing but the four walls and the roof. The entire insides were bulldozed years ago. The marque has rotted out and is pulling off the front towards the street. The city cited them for this in Nov & Dec. Personally I have feeling that since the building has deteriorated so much that no one wants it, it will be left to deteriorate until it becomes a further safety hazard had has to come down. Part of the building worthlessness is that they sold the air rights to the building next door.

    8. anon says:

      We have an Urgent Care on Amsterdam and 69th and a City MD on Broadway and 69th. Google maps tells me they are 384 feet apart.

    9. Bevin says:

      If they say they accept your insurance, the doctor should be covered in-network. To not tell you that when you check in is not acceptable, even if it might not be required by law. I have gone to CityMD many times and they have never done that to me. You should contact the NY Department of Health and let the urgent care center know that – they may change their tune very quickly.

    10. Jack says:

      Another supermarket closes on the upper west side. No wonder many of us are forced to use one of the online sites and pay the extra cost and fees. Also, many more items are out of stock online. No answer since costs of rent and operation keeps rising.

    11. Pjrod says:

      You all will complain about anything won’t you? Get over it, Mom and Pop are not coming back to the UWS.

    12. Mark says:

      Glad to see the new soul food joint, I’m sure most of the posters on here are to scared to go east of Broadway uptown, especially Columbus. Also that block will always be a crack den (100th and bway) good luck to who ever tries to open something there. Maybe that guy who puts postal stickers all over the neighborhood graffiti can open up a pop up shop like Keith Haring downtown.

    13. Mary says:

      I live right across the street from this Dag and it is always empty. My neighbors and I were just marveling that it has managed to stay open. We are well served in the area by several grocery stores, including Westside and Garden of Eden.

    14. Christina says:

      And ain’t that a shame!!!! The Upper West Side not for small businesses anymore! That’s a real shame and pity. Considering all politicians talk about is supporting the little guy, the small business owner! What a bunch of crap! Oh well!

      • Woody says:

        There is no evidence that the majority of small businesses on the UWS are actually owned by moms-and-pops who live in either the neighborhood or NYC. It’s been my experience over many years of living here that many of them live outside the area, especially in Westchester and New Jersey. So their income isn’t being put back into the local economy.

    15. Jeff Berger says:

      This is the real consequence of your progressive agenda.

      Mom and Pop cannot afford $15 minimum wage, paid health, paid sick days, paid maternity leave, etc. The only ones who can afford this are the big chains, and they are replacing people with automatic check out machines.

      A mom and pop chain with a location on the UWS sold out to a big company recently for that very reason.

      You want more mom and pops, get government out of the market place.

    16. Tom says:

      Don’t think it was Alamo. Think that would have gotten my attention for sure. For some reason I think it “may” have been Regal, but can’t be certain.

    17. 2 Handicap says:

      Boom. Hit the nail on the head. Bitch, bitch bitch, moan, moan, moan.

    18. Ted says:

      Uh, that might make sense if most of the Mom and Pop businesses on the UWS hadn’t closed well before the advent of Obamacare and the push for a fifteen dollar minimum wage.

      In most cases I believe the data would show that enormous rent increases associated with lease renewals are what drove these businesses out. So I’m putting my money on the insatiable greed of landlords who own property but provide zero value as the primary cause of the demise of Mom and Pop stores.

      Second place likely goes to the downturn in the economy that occurred in 2008 due to the insatiable greed of banks that also add no value but demand ever increasing fees for services that used to be free.

      There is little to no evidence that the causes you cite were significant factors on the UWS.

    19. Martin says:

      Yeah. Businesses shouldn’t have to pay a living wage. Individuals alone should be on the hook for purchasing over priced health care. And a nanny should be raising your children, not a parent. And you get sick? Too bad. You’re FIRED! Oh, and we’re locking all the doors of the business from the outside just in case any of you ingrates want to leave before putting in a 15 hour day. Dang progressive agenda!!!

    20. uws says:

      Too bad that there’s a Westside exactly across the street and Garden of eden 1.5 blocks south?

    21. Sean says:

      Maybe something “for the kids” will open up in the EMS space. Something high end! As for urgent care, these spots are the new corporate medicine. We already have corporate food in Fairway. Mom and pop left on a cruise years ago.

    22. drg says:

      as far as Urgi-Centers bills…there is a NYStae law protecting consumers from paying for extra “out of network” fees when they are in an “in network”center.

      the NY gov web site explaining is:
      http://www.dfs.ny.gov/consumer/hprotection.htm

      a quick copy and paste:
      “”A new law goes into effect March 31, 2015 that protects consumers from surprise bills when services are performed by a non-participating (out-of-network) doctor at a participating hospital or ambulatory surgical center in your HMO or insurer’s network or when a participating doctor refers an insured to a non-participating provider. The new law also protects all consumers from bills for emergency services.””

    23. Tom D. says:

      I am going to miss the EMS at 76th. They’ve been good to me for backpacking gear and exercise clothing. Sure there’s an EMS down at Spring St, and the REI not far from there, but going down to SoHo requires planning ahead.

      The EMS website says they are having a “warehouse event” at “consolidation stores”, which I suspect means other stores are closing. I pray they don’t suffer the same fate as Sports Authority, which went el busto last year.

      But will not miss the D’Ags at 110th St. Not a bad store (certainly seems nicer than a Gristedes), but I probably have been inside there maybe just once since the WMS reopened across the street.

    24. Kathy says:

      Oh no, not Dags. West side and GoE are expensive 🙁

    25. Margaret says:

      So sad that EMS is closing! I liked having them in the neighborhood.

      They had great selection but the store always felt under-staffed. I could never figure it out. Looks like they are private equity-owned. Shame to see the store close.

    26. LS says:

      Jeff:
      The rent increases (very significant increases over past few years in conjunction with expansion of super luxury real estate in NYC) are truly the reasons that longtime neighborhood restaurants,stores and businesses close in Manhattan.

      Moreover, once stable, long-time stores or restaurants are forced out due to skyrocketing rent, there is more likelihood that new businesses in the location will churn in and out within a few years. The loss of stable businesses is not good for neighborhoods.

      The website EV Grieve chronicles much of this in the East Village. Numerous long-time stores force out due to big new rent. One such example, Poppy’s Gourmet Corner on Avenue A at East 12th Street closing – “Owner Mike Attal told…that the rent is too high now…”

    27. D86 says:

      Fairway is probably on the way out also. Their Market Cap is lower than the value of some UWS apartments.
      The food retail industry has very small margins to play with. Buying a few items a week won’t allow an independent grocer to survive. Even Walmart closes locations when the revenue doesn’t cover the lease.
      At least try to buy online where they pay wages that don’t need tips.

    28. Tom says:

      Fairway stock trades at 30 CENTS!! Down 95% over the past 12 months and down from an all time high of $20+. In real trouble.

    29. NativeNYer says:

      Thank you DRG for the link. I printed it, and I hope to never need the information.

    30. lynn says:

      I also use the urgent care centers since my doctor joined a concierge service ($5000 a year), and if they take your insurance, then you are covered by anyone who is working in that unit. Just out of curiosity how could you not be covered at an emergency room at a hospital if you have insurance? If you’re being charged at either of these places then the problem is with your insurance and not the facility.

    31. Richard says:

      Listen we are not talking about Mom and Pop stores. Food Emporium on Broadway and 89th closed. You can hardly call that chain Mom and Pop!

    32. WombatNYC says:

      Re: PJrod -This is sad for all of us.

    33. Yoeli says:

      this is the de-gentrification process :).
      rents have gotten so high and the internet has become so dominant that the UWS is returning to its roots: ethnic stores, doctor’s offices, cheap chains…

    34. Christina says:

      @ Pjrod…. Yeah!! Stick it to ’em!!!! Who do these people think they are wanting Mom & Pop’s?! It’s the age of Daughter & Son’s!!! Didn’t people get the memo???…. ( dripping sarcasm!!)