The City Council this week approved the expansion of the MetroTech Business Improvement District to include the BAM Cultural District, and allowing it to up its assessment fees $1 million from $2.6 to $3.6 million annually.
BIDs are designated commercial strips around the city in which merchants pay a set fee for extra city services such as more security, extra trash pick-ups and holiday lighting.
BIDs generally receive strong support from commercial building owners, who often pass the fees on to their tenants. Larger tenants often are in agreement with the fees while smaller shopkeepers, who currently have little or no control over rent increases, sometimes question the fees as being yet another tax on small businesses. Nevertheless, BIDs overall are seen as helping commercial areas in maintenance and look across the city.
The expansion now sees the BID stretch from Downtown Brooklyn’s Northern tip at Tillary Street, down Flatbush Avenue to the Atlantic Terminal shopping mall and end at Atlantic Avenue – the southern tip of Downtown Brooklyn – across the street from Barclays Center arena.
The Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, a not-for-profit local development corporation, will continue to manage the MetroTech BID along with the Fulton Mall Improvement Association and the Court, Livingston, Schermerhorn streets BID, which it also manages.