Landmark Bicycles Expands to Avenue A: Yoga Studio in the Works?

Landmark Bicycles, Avenue ASuzanne Rozdeba Chung Pai, owner of Landmark Bicycles.

Landmark Bicycles, which opened in the East Village almost five years ago on East Third Street, has expanded to a space around the corner on Avenue A.

“We’re selling new bicycles and accessories in the new space, and will eventually move the store on Third Street downstairs, where we’ll continue to sell vintage bicycles and parts, and do repairs,” Chung Pai, 44, who owns the shops, told The Local this morning. The new store, where Mr. Pai pays $6,500 a month in rent, opened last Wednesday and was formerly occupied by Organic Modernism.

He’s selling brand-name bikes including Jamis, Diamond, Biria and Viva, Chrome messenger bags and cycling shoes, and helmets, bike chains, locks, gloves, and lights. The new store is having a sale until New Year’s Day, with everything 10 percent off. Select messenger bags, used bikes and other items are 15 to 50 percent off.

Mr. Pai came up with the idea of expansion when he learned over the summer that a space had opened up around the corner from his shop. With the bigger space, which also has a basement, he could move into selling new items, as well as continue his vintage-focused business. “My main customers on Third Street are locals, but in the new space, I’ll probably get more people who are just walking around the neighborhood because it’s on the avenue.”

Mr. Pai will hold on to the Third Street space until May 2013, when his lease is up for renewal. “I’ll start moving things from that store into here in February or March, and eventually have the whole space take up the downstairs. I’m building a ramp so that you can wheel your bicycle down for repairs.”

UntitledSuzanne Rozdeba

But he’s not ready just yet to let go of the space, where he now pays $5,900 a month. The New York City Housing Authority, with whom he has the lease, said his rent would increase, once his lease was up for renewal. Mr. Pai said if he can negotiate the amount to something agreeable, he’s considering opening a yoga studio.

“It’s a great space for yoga, with lots of windows and light. I do yoga, and I have friends who are instructors. I’d like to make it a yoga co-op. There are a lot of instructors who would eventually love to open up their own studios, and in the meantime are teaching at other studios. It can be really hard for them,” he said. “This would make them partners in the business.”

As far as business goes in the East Village, “When the hurricane hit, a lot of business owners, friends of mine, were hurt by that. But I think businesses should be better next year, with the economy bouncing back, and the effects of hurricane Sandy will be over,” he said.

“There’s also been a big exodus of East Village business owners moving from the East Village to Brooklyn,” said Mr. Pai, who also opened a bike shop in Williamsburg in May. “I see a lot of the artists and freelancers moving to Brooklyn. Now there’s an NYU crowd, and a lot of foreigners moving here. I don’t see neighborhood rent prices going down. If anything, they’re going up.”

Landmark Bicycles, 43 Avenue A and 136 East Third Street, (212) 674-2343. Open 11 a.m.- 8 p.m. weekdays, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. weekends.