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NYCEDC And Community Solutions Announce Grand Opening of MGB Pops!, a Pop Up Marketplace on Vacant Lot in Brownsville


Activation of Lot Represents Increased Economic Opportunity for the Brownsville Community, Bringing Food and Retail Options to the Neighborhood

New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and Community Solutions today announced the grand opening of Mother Gaston Boulevard Pops! (MGB Pops!), a pop-up marketplace in Brownsville, Brooklyn featuring food and retail from local entrepreneurs. The marketplace, created in concert with the Ocean Hill-Brownsville Neighborhood Improvement Association (OHBNIA), has been designed in direct response to Brownsville residents’ requests for more retail and food options in the area. Located on a 2,500 square foot formerly vacant City-owned lot, MGB Pops! will offer locally made clothing, food, accessories, cosmetics and more, located in freestanding vendor kiosks and modified shipping containers. Activation of the lot and support for local entrepreneurs represents the City’s effort to increase economic opportunity in areas across all five boroughs via programs that respond to the needs and concerns of individual communities. The grand opening will take place this afternoon at 4 pm at 425 Mother Gaston Boulevard.    

“It is essential that we view underutilized lots across the City as opportunities to foster economic growth," said NYCEDC President Kyle Kimball.  "MGB Pops! is a perfect example of the potential that vacant lots have to spur economic development and fill needs of individual areas.  We are excited to launch this pop-up market, and look forward to remaining engaged with neighborhoods across all five boroughs to identify ideas and opportunities to increase opportunity and showcase local talent."    

“Residents have identified a lack of commercial investment in Brownsville for years,” said Maygen Moore of Community Solutions. “People want food and retail options, but outside companies have often been slow to notice. This is about Brownsville’s makers and artisans taking responsibility for the economic life of their community.”    

“MGB Pops! is a truly exciting venture for the Brownsville community, one that taps into the creative spirit of the local entrepreneurs and one that showcases this neighborhood as yet another must-see destination in Brooklyn,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams. “Vacant lots are full of potential, and the work of the New York City Economic Development Corporation and Community Solutions, in partnership with community organizations, is unlocking that potential with this marketplace. The best is yet to come in Brownsville, and MGB Pops! proves it.”    

MGB Pops! is part of the City’s continued effort to engage community partners and develop creative ways to spur economic development in neighborhoods across all five boroughs.  The idea for a pop-up marketplace stems directly from discussions with the community at the Hope Summit, a neighborhood planning event organized by Community Solutions. At that event, residents cited local food and retail options as potential contributors to economic growth and to the widespread use of public space in Brownsville. In suggesting the activation of vacant lots like the one now occupied by MGB Pops!, residents aimed to increase consumer foot traffic and foster neighbor-to-neighbor interaction.    MGB Pops! will run until December 28, when it closes for the winter, on Fridays and Saturdays from 12 pm to 8 pm and Sundays from 12 pm to 6 pm.    

Vendors at MGB Pops! include:  

Blessit Couture Clothing Designs – Blessit has been designing for over 20 years for friends, family, coworkers, associates and a host of entrepreneurs. Blessit offers original clothing designs that are created with the individual in mind. Each design is crafted for the individual and their personality, who appreciates uniqueness, color and a sense of style.  

Everything Sticks & More Catering – Everything Sticks & More Catering features both food and dessert on a stick. The signature “chicken and waffles” dish will be on the menu at MGB Pops!  

Alleigh Lang Beauté - Alleigh Lang Beauté is a line of skin and body care creams and butters entirely based on organic plant and fruit extracts. These products are carefully formulated to comfort and treat skins exposed to daily stress, with infused flowers, vitamins A and E, and essential oils.  

House of Juice – House of Juice will provide a menu of juices, smoothies, tonics, probiotics and brews, along with a selection of raw and paleo baked treats.  

Made In Brownsville – Made in Brownsville works to make technology and design accessible to at-risk youth in Brownsville, by employing youth to learn design, fabrication, multimedia marketing and communication skills to give them the technical and leadership tools they need to better themselves and their community.  Made in Brownsville will be selling apparel in the marketplace, with proceeds going back to employing more youth within the community. Made in Brownsville also created the MGB Pops! mural, which is painted on the wall of the marketplace.  

My Secret Treasures Boutique - My Secret Treasures Boutique originated in 2007 as a Mommy and Me jewelry line that turned into a full line boutique. It carries everything from casual wear to formal dresses.  

Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry - Asha Johnson is a Brooklyn born and raised entrepreneur. She has been a consultant for 3 years with Traci Lynn Fashion Jewelry, selling necklaces, rings, bracelets and more.  

Top 20 Tops – Top 20 Tops enters the retail world with well-tailored women’s tops.  This lot in Brownsville is the first to be activated as part of NYCEDC’s ongoing program to design and launch temporary uses on vacant lots in the Brownsville, Ocean Hill and East New York sections of Brooklyn. The program is designed to identify creative and effective uses for vacant lots, bringing much-needed resources and economic opportunity to neighborhoods and stimulating the local economy.

About NYCEDC

New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City's primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC's mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City's competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City's many opportunities. Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, or visit our blog to learn more about NYCEDC projects and initiatives.

About Community Solutions  

Community Solutions (CS) supports local communities in collectively solving urgent social problems. A national nonprofit organization based in New York City, CS brings together local innovators, committed citizens, government, businesses and nonprofits to design practical, cost effective solutions that can be implemented quickly, measured and spread. Most recently, the organization coordinated the nationally regarded 100,000 Homes Campaign, which helped 186 communities find housing for 105,000 homeless Americans. The organization’s Brownsville Partnership is a network of organizations and residents working together to build on existing assets to create solutions to Brownsville’s most pressing challenges.    

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Contact Info

Kate Blumm/Ian Fried, NYCEDC

(212) 312-3523