By  on April 16, 2009

By a show of hands, the majority of the 60 Garment Center workers who gathered in Anna Sui’s showroom Wednesday supported New York City’s proposal to earmark a 300,000-square-foot building for apparel manufacturing, but several saw it as a starting point for additional zoning, not the ultimate solution.

While representatives from the Council of Fashion Designers of America have met with city officials off and on for the past few years, this was the first time contractors, button makers and all the other behind-the-scenes business owners had the chance to air any concerns. Beyond the ailing economy, several business owners said they are trying to soldier on despite escalating rents, diminishing production and uncompromising landlords. In hashing out the pros and cons of securing the 300,000-square-foot building at 270 West 38th Street for manufacturing, apparel executives revealed an industry in peril.

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