N.Y.C. Retail on Road to Recovery

Retailers in Midtown and downtown Manhattan began reopening Sunday as power was restored throughout most of the city.

Retailers in Midtown and downtown Manhattan began reopening Sunday as power was restored throughout most of the city and nearly 80 percent of subway service was back in operation.

This story first appeared in the November 5, 2012 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Some stores in Midtown Manhattan, such as Lord & Taylor on Fifth Avenue, opened for the first time Sunday since losing power last week. Stores in downtown Manhattan such as J. Crew on Prince Street and Tory Burch on Elizabeth Street, where power was out, also reopened Sunday.

The Americana Manhasset, Long Island’s North Shore luxury shopping mecca, had power again over the weekend and was planning on opening for the first time on Sunday as well. Some stores encountered glitches, such as the Coach location at the Americana, where a sales associate at 11 a.m. noted that the store had power and was planning on opening at noon, but was still having issues getting the cash register to work.

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Along the New Jersey shore, one of the hardest hit areas, the Tanger Outlets at Atlantic City was open for business. A sales associate at the Forever 21 store there noted, “Twenty-five percent of Atlantic City still doesn’t have power, but we do.”

Retailers launched efforts to help victims of the hurricane. Michael Gould, chairman and chief executive officer of Bloomingdale’s, posted a note on the retailer’s Web site letting customers know they had a place to go to meet up with loved ones to sit, have coffee, or even just to “recharge your electronic devices or use one of our phones to make a call.”

Joining the number of companies making gifts to the American Red Cross was Macy’s, which pledged to match donations made at any of its registers until Nov. 30 with the goal of raising at least $1 million; it also offered discounts to residents affected by the storm. Barney’s New York said it would donate 10 percent of all sales Sunday — a sum in the amount of at least $50,000 — from its Madison Avenue flagship.

Fashion Delivers, the industry’s charitable organization, is seeking donations of excess home and apparel products from manufacturers and retailers for Hurricane Sandy victims.

While some areas were starting to look less like ghost towns, there were still nearly 1 million Con Edison customers without power statewide. One major problem that surfaced was the shortage of gas for commuters and residents who needed fuel to power generators.

By Saturday, over 8 million gallons of gas had been delivered to the area, but the lines remained long at stations that were open, both throughout New York City as well as New Jersey, Westchester County and Long Island. While estimates of economic losses from Hurricane Sandy range in the $30 billion to $50 billion range, the losses statewide in New York alone are said to be over $18 billion.