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Issue Date: May 2004 Issue

Neighborhood Watch

City planners frustrated by vacant downtown storefronts might learn a thing or two by hanging out on the East Side's Larchmere Boulevard for an afternoon. The 10 blocks between East 121st Street and North Moreland Road is known mostly for its antiques shops and galleries, but the mix of more than 50 small businesses also includes a vintage bookseller, a barbershop, a tailor and seven places where visitors can grab a bite to eat. Of course, the neighborhood already has a built-in clientele thanks to nearby apartment buildings, but antiques shop owner Marc Goodman, president of the Larchmere Merchants Association, says he also chalks up the thriving business district's success to its "friendly, if eccentric" proprietors. "There's a certain amount of the public that does enjoy Main Street shopping," he says.

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