Who, What, When, Where & Why
The Flatiron/23rd Street Partnership Business Improvement District, formed in 2006, is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to enhance the area's reputation as one of New York's most vital and exciting neighborhoods. This is accomplished by maintaining a clean and safe environment for the district's businesses, residents, and visitors; by spearheading area improvement projects; and by marketing the diverse business and retail options in this vibrant and historic neighborhood.
The BID is a nonprofit organization formed by property owners, businesses, residents and others with a stake in the Flatiron District. It is one of 72 BIDs throughout New York City and its focus is on community improvements and economic development. An irregularly shaped area, shown below, of some 38 square blocks, it runs from 21st to 28th Streets and from parts of Sixth Avenue over to, but not including, Third Avenue, serving 21 million square feet of commercial space and more than 4,500 businesses.
Since the BID's launch in 2006, the neighborhood has seen profound changes for the better - and the BID has played a major role in effecting that change.
Today, the BID has an annual assessment of $2.2 million funded by the area’s commercial property owners. It is one of the city’s largest BIDs and it has helped transform the Flatiron District.
What We Do
Since its inception, the BID has engaged in a broad range of programs and services to enhance the district’s quality of life.
The BID quickly put into place two dedicated groups of men and women, one to keep the neighborhood clean, the other to keep it safe. With its brooms and buckets, its power washers and paint brushes, the BID’s Clean Team rids the area of litter and graffiti, while members of the Public Safety Team serve as unofficial ambassadors of goodwill, giving directions, acting as a liaison with the New York Police Department and providing a visible symbol of stability. Both groups, easily identified by their distinctive Flatiron Partnership uniforms, are out in the neighborhood seven days a week, all year-round.
The BID’s marketing program includes this website, a weekly newsletter, a neighborhood map, email alerts, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Youtube pages, a free weekly walking tour, and sponsorship opportunities on branded banners and litter baskets. Its Intersections program includes a Speaker Series and Business Forums that have addressed such challenging issues as crime, dealing with emergencies, starting new businesses, and coping with challenging economic conditions. On the cultural level, the BID has partnered with local organizations to produce programs as varied as an architectural interpretation of the district and a salute to the neighborhood’s continuing culinary distinction.
On the most obvious level -- the look of the area -- big changes have been made. The Flatiron Public Plazas that were initiated north of and adjacent to the Flatiron Building in 2008 have brought new life, an influx of visitors and a revitalization of business. Maintained by the BID, they are embellished by lush plantings, bright blue umbrellas, silver-toned tables and chairs, and the BID’s Visitors Information Cart. Add to that a Streetscape and Beautification plan that resulted in planted trees and tree-pits planted with flowers, an abundance of hanging flower baskets, sleek new bike racks, and the beautification of the Park Avenue South median malls.
Last but certainly not least, the BID operates a homeless outreach program through a contract with Urban Pathways, and is a founding member of the East Side Alliance, an effort geared toward fostering communication and accountability among area methadone clinics, law enforcement, and the community.