Downtown Brooklyn Chain Store Surge

DNA Info recently reported that there is a chain store “surge” going on in Downtown Brooklyn. Based on a 2013  report by Center for an Urban Future, national chain stores such as H&M, TJ Maxx, Nordstrom Rack, and Sephora are making beachheads in places such as the Fulton Mall.


State of the Chains Report 2013, Center for an Urban Future

State of the Chains Report 2013, Center for an Urban Future


Overall, Brooklyn saw the largest percentage increase in the number of chain stores over the past year, a growth of 2.8%, from 1,470 stores in 2012 to 1,511 stores in 2013. Last year, Brooklyn also took the NYC chain store crown, with 2.6% growth between 2011-2012. Brooklyn Heights (11201) is now tied with the Kings Plaza Shopping Center in Flatlands (11234) with the largest number of chain stores in the borough.


While these and other nationally recognized chain stores are growing throughout Brooklyn (faster than anywhere else in New York City according to the report), Brooklyn has had their fair share of chain stores for quite some time.

Between 2009-2013, change in number of stores:

  • V.I.M – (-3)
  • Ashley Stewart – (0)
  • Jimmy Jazz – (-8)
  • Children’s Place – (+12)
  • Dr. Jay’s – (+2)
  • Strawberry – (-4)
  • Golden Krust – (-6)
  • Mandee – (-6)




However, some of these businesses are often not found outside of “urban” markets and were completely left out of Center for an Urban Future’s calculations. Yes, Brooklyn has seen chain store growth, but perhaps it is not as pronounced as the report claims. Some of the other chain stores which are commonly found in Brooklyn which were left out:


Chain stores not counted in report:

  • Rainbow
  • Porta Bella
  • Stacy Adams
  • Cookies
  • Conway
  • Danice
  • Pretty Girl
  • S&D Underground


What the report does show is not necessarily a growth in Brooklyn chain stores, but a replacement of regional, urban niche stores with those of massive, national-brand chains.

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