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BID boom on Fifth

The Brooklyn Paper
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The BID bug is spreading deep into Park Slope.

With Downtown Brooklyn, Flatbush Avenue, Sunset Park and Bay Ridge already carved into business improvement districts, merchants on Fifth Avenue have proposed just such a zone from Dean Street to 23rd Street.

Businesses within the zone would pay an extra tax that would go towards maintenance and security in the area.

City taxes already cover such things, but business leaders across Brooklyn have followed Manhattan’s lead and looked to BIDs as a way to improve the service they get from city agencies.

“Let me keep my mind on business and let someone else worry about cleanliness,” said Howard Mankin, who owns Aaron’s clothing store on Fifth Avenue at 17th Street and attended a first meeting about the proposed BID earlier this month.

Merchants’ payment would depend on the size of their property and the annual tax would not run above $485 for most merchants, according to Tony Giordano, who organized the BID in Sunset Park and spoke at the Nov. 6 meeting.

Before a new improvement district can be created, a majority of property owners within its boundaries must approve it, and the plan must pass a public approval process.

If approved, the latest proposed district would allow a trash-sensitive pedestrian to cross from one end of Brooklyn to another without ever leaving a BID.

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