It didn't take long for the conspiracy theorists to say what IF yesterday's fire turns out to be suspicious ... after all, 14th Street and Avenue A is prime real estate ... and many of the storefronts along this stretch of single-level businesses have been for rent for months and months...
As I noted last summer: "This area on 14th Street between Avenue A and Avenue B is ripe for development. So when when the 'space available' signs went up last summer (2008)...Hello Marc Jacobs! Hello huge Chase branch!'"
Well... according to the Post, the fire started at Pete's-a-Pizza, where a welder was working on a fire-access door. There, his welding torch apparently set some grease on fire. And that was it.
Anyway, Rainbow took over a big space here last July.
The area here also falls outside the East Village/Lower East Side Rezoning ... Noted one reader, "a nice fat dorm here would solve NYU's missing square footage."
Anyway, I'm not suggesting that anything happened here aside from a terrible, accidental fire that destroyed four local businesses... but, it is something to think about... and we've been around long enough to see the unthinkable happen... luxury hotels on the Bowery? An NYU dorm popping up at the site of a venerable pool hall/concert venue//club?
Meanwhile, I've been told that the owners of Stuyvesant Grocery do have insurance. No word just yet on what their plans are. I meant to add that I hope all the businesses will be able to rebuild and reopen here.