Byline: A.F.

NEW YORK--As part of its image-enhancement program for SA, the Fashion Center Business Improvement District will adorn the streets with 108 banners on 54 light poles between Sixth and Eighth Avenues from 35th Street to 41st Street. They will be in place to give added panache to the upcoming spring collections.
Designed by Michael Beirut of the graphic arts firm Pentagram, the 90-inch by 30-inch banners feature the FCBID's button logo on varied backgrounds of red, yellow, purple, green, orange and blue.
Rusty Moore, executive director of the FCBID, said the purpose of the banner program is to create a visual identity for the fashion district and contribute to the culture and pride of the industry.
"With the banner program, we're celebrating not only the area but the industry as a whole," Moore said.
The banner program, sponsored by Chase Manhattan Bank and the FCBID, will be unfurled today with a ceremony at the corner of 39th Street and Seventh Avenue. The banners will hang through Nov. 11.
"The Fashion Center banner program has provided us with an opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to New York City while contributing to the economic growth of the fashion industry," said Don Gibson, division executive for Chase's textile and apparel division, which provides financial services to the industry.
Moore said the main goal is to make the district more attractive to the estimated 22,000 retailers who visit New York every year, spending $100 million annually on hotel and other expenses. She said buyers who come to town during spring market weeks should notice a cleaner and safer area, thanks to the sanitation and security programs FCBID launched in March and that are running in full force, augmenting city services.
Moore said many buyers have also signed up with the FCBID's airfare, hotel and restaurant discount program through Wilson Travel here.
"Our city's future depends on the health of its industries," said FCBID chairman George Kaufman, who is a real-estate owner in the district. "That's why it's so vital to attract buyers to the fashion center, motivate them to come more often and enable them to stay longer."

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