High fashion is coming to the Municipal Building.
Upscale clothing store Neiman Marcus inked a deal to lease the entire second floor of the Municipal Building on the corner of Joralemon and Court streets on Jan. 10, pushing along the city’s plan to turn its former office space into a mall. The Last Call Studio by Neiman Marcus outlet store is slated to open this summer, and shoppers in the area are already excited.
“It’s great,” said Gayle Kennedy, a Brooklyn Heights resident. “You won’t have to trek into Manhattan to go shopping.”
The store, the first of its kind in the city, will sell clothing and accessories from high-end brands such as Burberry, Michael Kors, and John Hardy.
The city sold the bottom floors of the Municipal Building to the developer United American Land in 2011 with the hopes of turning the old city offices into a retail center. A Sephora makeup store has already opened on the ground floor and a YogaWorks yoga studio and an It’Sugar candy store are expected to open this year.
“Our commitment to the city was to bring great, unique retail to this incredible site,” said Al Laboz, whose company controls the space. “We feel that Neiman’s fits the bill.”
People in the area have already seen changes thanks to the redevelopment.
“More people come shopping now,” said Mahamud Rahman, who operates a newsstand in front of the building. “It brings better people to the area.”
But others see these new upscale businesses as a boon for the upper crust only.
“This store won’t hire low-income people,” said Anthony Christian, who has lived in the area for 35 years. “I wish things would open that offer more jobs.”
The retailer is not the only swank clothier with designs on Downtown. Banana Republic opened a factory store on Fulton Mall on Thursday, making it the latest piece of a high-end, chain-store overhaul that has taken place in the neighborhood over the past decade.