Chinatown small businesses fear economic hit from congestion pricing

Small businesses in Manhattan's Chinatown say they fear congestion pricing could worsen things for business owners who have yet to bounce back from COVID-19.

Chinatown is known for its history, food, unique retail, fish markets, and more, but it relies heavily on tourists to visit and spend money there.

But business owners like Robert Cheng are afraid that congestion pricing will prevent people from visiting one of the city's most historic neighborhoods and cause him to have to pay more for goods and services, just as he is almost operating at 100% again.

Speaking with FOX 5 NY, Cheng said he feared congestion pricing could cost him as much as $10,000 a month.


NYC congestion pricing map, costs, hours, exemptions

Here's everything you need to know about congestion pricing in NYC, including the start date, a map, toll prices, toll hours and exemptions for drivers.

Other business owners like Cheng have received support from community leaders who have filed a class action lawsuit against the MTA to stop congestion pricing from going into effect.

"Everything will cost more," said Queens Councilman Robert Holden. "How dumb is that?"

Congestion pricing opponents in Chinatown say the new tax will force the historic community out of existence.

In a statement, the MTA told FOX 5 NY: "We are responding to their pro-traffic lawsuit in court, where a 4,000 page environmental assessment will make the case that congestion relief delivers less traffic, safer streets, cleaner air and more investment in the mass transit most people use."

The MTA has already announced that congestion pricing will begin on June 30.