“Everything changes over the years. Now there are more business opportunities and more stores,” said Alan Kurtzman, grandson of the shop’s founder. “I’m still here working, and I am not going anywhere anytime soon.”
Kurtzman pointed to the new businesses that have recently opened along West Main, including Dark Forest Chocolate Makers, Bloomsbury Lane Toy Shoppe, Gilded Maple, Lilly Belle Meads, Furry Friends Holistic Pet Spa and Purely Pets.
And the nearby sale of a 4.4 acre parcel downtown will make way for a $15 million mixed-use development that could be a turning point, said Lancaster Village Mayor William C. Schroeder. The mix of boutiques, restaurants and up to 48-midrange to upscale apartments proposed for West Main Street by businessman Tommy R. Sweeney should breath fresh air into the central core, the mayor said.
Businessman Henry Kahn opened The New York Store in the spring of 1929, months before the beginning of the Depression. It outlasted many changes in the village business district and survived mall and internet shopping to keep its doors open while neighboring businesses have not, Schroeder said.
During its early days of business, published s touted a man’s suit for a “sensational” $12.75, while a boy’s suit cost $5.98, Kurtzman noted. As a child, Kurtzman recalled folding socks in the store with his grandfather.
The store moved to its current location at 16 Central Ave. from 4 W. Main St. in 1957, four years after Kurtzman’s father, Shelly Kurtzman, joined the business. Shelly Kurtzman was active in the Lancaster Industrial Development Agency and the Lancaster Opera House. He died in 2014.