A Chelsea street vendor who might be forced to move says he is worried he will not only lose his spot, but his customers as well. NY1's Susan Jhun filed the following "NY1 For You" report.
Food cart vendor Muhamed Hussein is a familiar face to those in the Chelsea area on 9th Avenue between 15th and 16th Streets.
"I’m here 22 years. Exactly 22 year. Everybody know me here," says Hussein.
Two years ago, we told you about Hussein after he contacted "NY1 For You" for help when new street tree plantings by The Chelsea Improvement Company, CIC, threatened to move him from the location he has held for decades.
"He said, 'Listen you have to move from here. We have to make 40 trees around the building,'" says Hussein.
After NY1's story aired, a compromise was reached between CIC and Hussein where some shuffling made room for both the cart and tree. However, now two years later Hussein is being told once again he will have to move.
CIC has been installing bike racks as part of a four-year plan started in 2007 to improve Chelsea and its streetscapes. They have placed a bike rack right where Hussein's cart is, pushing his cart closer to the building causing Hussein to get ticketed. The vendor is required to be a certain number of feet from the building's entrance and he cannot pull his cart closer to the street because of the stationed bike rack -- although there is room for a bike rack just north of his cart.
"NY1 For You" reached out to the Department of Transportation where officials released a statement saying, "We are working with the Chelsea Improvement Corporation and the vendor to find a resolution that meets both parties' needs."
Hussein says he remains hopeful, but isn't so sure that all of his troubles will end.
CIC was founded by a group of businesses, one being Taconic Investment Partners, and Hussein's cart sits in front of a Taconic building. He believes they do not want him there. Hussein mentions the tree, other isolated incidents and now the bike rack, all causing him to get ticketed and making it harder to make a living.
"One for $700, another one for $700. I have kids in college. You know, and I tell them, I’m not bum, I know my rights," says Hussein.
"NY1 For You" reached out to Taconic regarding Hussein's claims and they had no response.
NY1 will continue to follow the story.
If you'd like "NY1 For You" to look into a problem, call our 24-hour helpline at 212-379-3599 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.