The chic and fanciful Fifth Avenue Disney Store that came into NYC during the sudden exuberance of the 1990s is now exiting chic and fanciful Fifth Avenue during its sudden despair. Disney delivered the depressing news to NY state officials earlier this week that it was closing its 30,000-square-foot World of Disney emporium and, as a farewell gift, may be adding 148 more people to our ever-popular unemployment lines.

Faith Hope Consolo, a Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate chairwoman, said that the expense of prime space on the corner of 55th Street and Fifth Avenue “did not make economic sense” for the company anymore and, if they’re unable to find any cheaper prime space in the surrounding area, will be packing up shop altogether and leaving town.

“She estimated that the company paid as much as $15 million a year in rent. For $2 million or $3 million in annual rent, Disney could get a storefront in the Times Square area that could serve its purpose of having a presence where tourists congregate, she said.”

The company’s World of Disney Store on Fifth Avenue was its biggest outside of its theme parks. When it opened, there was optimism that the store would serve as the flagship for a host of  prosperous  Disney stores throughout the metropolitan area. Alas, in this day of costly reality, even the like of  Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck fail to amuse.

City Room, NY Times


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