Hong Wah Laundromat No More After Fire – 176 MacDougal Street Ground Floor Now for Rent

Hong Wah Laundromat No More After Fire – 176 MacDougal Street Ground Floor Now for Rent

Earlier today, I posted some history of 176 MacDougal and Shakespeare’s Restaurant, and, previously, I reported on the fire that took place at Hong Wah laundromat on the ground floor in February. At that time, I wondered if Hong Wah would return.

Well, we now have the answer … and it is is … no.

The space now sports a “for lease” sign.

Hong Wah Sign No More
Horse Shoe above Door !

The mystery of the address continues … except at Buchbinder & Warren’s web site, the address is listed as 1 MacDougal Alley. I believe there is more to the story of the laundromat’s demise. From what I was able to find out online, a laundromat had been in that spot since at least sometime in the 1990s.

As far as the space itself, it is 625 sq. feet. The rent is $6510 a month. (Curious what the laundromat was paying…) I couldn’t get decent pictures of the inside, but it is adorable and has so much potential. Unfortunately, based on some of the other new tenants for nearby 8th Street, I have a feeling what the space deserves is not what it will get. But we’ll see! A laundromat is not exactly glamorous but it is a neighborhood need. I can’t help wondering if B&W really wanted them out for awhile and now they got their chance. A laundromat next to Stumptown Coffee, their prized tenant? Not so fantastic.

But … it had character. It brought its own something that the neighborhood needed.

And, if you are wondering what will take the laundromat’s place, bets are on for something “artisanal.” (Does that term really irk you too by now?)

As Ellyn (provider of the shots outside Shakespeare’s in that spot in 1975) responded when I told her this, “what about a good old-fashioned Chinese restaurant in this neighborhood?”

Well, maybe if it is artisanal Chinese.

The larger question… will the payphone remain?

To be continued…

Photos: Cathryn