December counts show crowded district sidewalks.
The good news for 34th Street continued in 2013. Madison Square Garden completed a billion-dollar transformation. Macy’s Herald Square remained in operation while undergoing a $450 million renovation of its own. The area’s retail profile continued to rise as Swatch opened Hour Passion at 112 W. 34th, H&M announced plans to open a flagship store at the soon-to-be-beautified Herald Center, and Urban Outfitters signed a lease at 1333 Broadway, tugging the city’s premier retail apparel district northward.
Throughout the year, 34th Street Partnership kept its finger on the pulse of the district by conducting pedestrian counts at crucial times. Our latest counts, conducted during the pre-Christmas rush, showed once again that the above-mentioned companies are making wise investments.
The counts were conducted at five key locations, on four street corners and at the LIRR entrance at Penn Station. Counts were recorded on two separate workdays - Wednesday, December 11 and Thursday, December 12. On each day we counted during three intervals: during the morning rush (7:45am-9:15am), at lunchtime (11:45am-1:15pm), and during the evening rush (4:45pm-6:15pm).
The counts were strong district-wide. The busiest spot was the front of Victoria’s Secret at the northeast corner of Sixth Avenue and 34th Street, where we recorded afternoon averages of 7,122 walking eastbound and westbound per hour, and 4,320 walking northbound and southbound per hour. The peak number of passerbys on 34th Street at Victoria's Secret was 7,608 per hour.
The northwest corner of Seventh Avenue and 34th Street recorded afternoon averages of 3,891 walking eastbound and westbound per hour, and 6,870 walking northbound and southbound per hour. And the southwest corner of Fifth Avenue, in front of Heartland Brewery, had afternoon averages of 3,450 walking eastbound and westbound per hour, and 3,315 walking northbound and southbound per hour.
At Penn Station, we saw averages of more than 6,846 people per hour exiting the LIRR entrance at 34th Street and Seventh Avenue in the morning, and 6,510 entering per hour in the afternoon. The LIRR entrance also recorded peaks of 8,052 per hour in the morning and 8,208 in the afternoon.
High pedestrian figures are great news for street-level retailers, whose customer-base is strengthened by heavy foot traffic.
For more information on 34th Street Partnership’s pedestrian counts, or to view the entire report, email Claire Austin, or call 917-438-5127.
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