Fairway is shutting down several of its largest locations starting this week, in a re-organization under its recent bankruptcy filing.
Fairway is going out of business in Harlem, Red Hook and Douglaston, and on Long Island in Plainview and Westbury.
The Harlem store closes this week, the others by July 17. The flagship and original location at Broadway and 74th St. remains open, as do other locations.
At the same time as the store closures, a bankruptcy judge has approved Fairway Market’s decision to award more than $1 million in bonuses to executives who are steering the company through bankruptcy. The judge added the grocer’s workers also “probably deserve” some extra cash, too, according to Newsbreak.
The huge, 35,000 square foot Harlem Fairway, at 2328 12th Avenue, under the elevated portion of the West Side Highway between 132nd and 133rd Streets, has been open since 1995. It’s probably best known for it’s giant walk-in “cold room” filled with meats, fish, cheeses and frozen foods
The Red Hook Fairway opened in 2006, and was the largest of the company’s fourteen stores.
It was decimated by Hurricane Sandy in 2012, and re-opened to great fanfare the next year. It also faced new competition for fans of upscale and organic products when the a Whole Foods opened nearby, in Gowanus, a few months later.
According to Bklnyr, In the updated filing, the 75 employees at the Red Hook will be let go. The company employed 2,256 across its 14 locations.
Bklnr also reports that the Georgetown Fairway at 2149 Ralph Avenue, which opened just three years ago and employed 127 people, is expected to become a Key Food Store.
Fairway History & Future
Fairway has been a NYC staple since 1933, when the Glickberg family opened a fruit-and-vegetable stand on the Upper West Side. It became known for its wide selection of cheese, olives, coffee, organic foods, and the fresh fruits and veggies that started the business.
Like many family-owned businesses, the generation which decided to grow the company into a regional or national brand took on too much debt to expand.
The bankruptcy filing in January 2020 was its second since 2016, and caused a flurry of news headlines that all locations were shutting down, such as this article in the New York Post,
ShopRite operator Village Super Market bought five locations on the auction block, including the Upper West Side flagship, and the parking lot of the Harlem location.
Originally – in January – ShopRite indicated it would keep the stores open and keep the name. Things are different six months later.
Probably it will be razed for a high-rise, perhaps with a ShopRite or a Fairway in the ground floor.
The real estate is just too valuable to leave it alone.
The Upper West Side is booming with construction, with several major construction sites on Broadway between 96th and 79th, and on side streets.
There’s also an empty Gristede’s on the corner of 86th and Broadway that could – and should – be a supermarket again. Perhaps ShopRite could open there.