With rents in the East Village being raised at astronomical rates, another long-established, local business is forced to leave a neighborhood they have been a part of for 33 years. Allied Hardware, located at 59 2nd Ave, will sadly be closing its doors by the end of September. ICON Realty, who bought the property earlier this year, has increased their rent to $26,000 per month. An outrageous rent hike, considering what the owners (Jovita and Alex) paid when they originally opened their doors in 1982.
Jovita was born in the Northern province of Luzon in the Philippines, and immigrated to San Francisco where she pursued a Masters Degree in Engineering. She later worked as an Engineer at Boeing, in a time when it was uncommon for women to hold such positions. Soon after, Jovita met Alex: Her husband to be. He was living in New York, and operating another hardware store on Canal Street with a business partner. After Jovita and Alex married, they started Allied Hardware. Ever since, they have been an iconic local business to the neighborhood, and have witnessed first hand the effects of gentrification in the East Village. Jovita tells us that there have been many changes; “before, more artists and contractors would shop here. Now, it’s different.”.
On September 30, 2015, when Allied Hardware will close its doors, Jovita and Alex will say goodbye to a place they spent decades in – essentially more time than their home in New Jersey. “We will miss the neighborhood. We’ve seen neighborhood kids grow up, from when they were babies until they went off to college.”
FABnyc would like to thank Jovita and Alex for being a part of the East Village for as long as they have. We wish them all the best on their retirement and future endeavors.
Written by Helen Cretu
With Allied Hardware closing its doors in the next couple of weeks, we wanted to repost this piece to remind everyone the stories Jovita and Alex both inhabited and contributed to here in the Lower East Side. Here is a parting note from FAB’s ED, Risa:
“A community is comprised of buildings and parks, residents and workers, businesses and schools, theaters and ballparks. All of these elements combine to create a supportive ecosystem in which we all can thrive. Wouldn’t you agree that your local hardware store – purveyor of tools, materials and advice – exemplifies what it is to offer genuine support? Arts institutions, in particular, often develop strong relationships with their local hardware store because of their unique need for tools and supplies for their creative pursuits.
FAB, as well as the theaters and arts institutions on 4th Street, have always been grateful for the tremendous service at Allied Hardware. We will be sad to see them go later this fall, and we wish their owners all the best in the next phase of their lives.”