By  on July 18, 2007

NEW YORK — A coalition of industry businesses is trying to stall gentrification of the Garment District here, and is launching an initiative today to draw attention to its efforts.

Unhappy because hundreds of small apparel businesses have been priced out of the neighborhood or have not had their leases renewed, the group, Concerned Business Owners, will be collecting signatures for a petition it plans to send to Daniel Doctoroff, deputy mayor for economic development and rebuilding. The group wants him to reconsider loosening the area's zoning laws. The organization's founder, Samantha Cortes, said that would make it easier for non-fashion-related companies to relocate to the Garment District.

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