This section is from the book "Practical Real Estate Methods For Broker, Operator & Owner", by Thirty Experts. Also available from Amazon: Practical Real Estate Methods for Broker, Operator, Owner.
Often originality and nerve will prompt a man, because of recognized peculiar conditions, to throw all precedent to the wind and win out. Just as Henry Siegel, in the face of the accepted opinion that the west side of a north and south thoroughfare is much better, built on the east side of Sixth Avenue, 18th and 19th Streets. Not only has the business been a marvelous success, but the entire east side of Sixth Avenue, from 14th to 18th Streets, has been benefited.
His reasons, no doubt, were as follows: Noticeably peculiar to that particular section between 14th and 23rd Streets, Broadway and Sixth Avenue, at that time, $1,500,000 was being annually spent by merchants in the advertising of dry and furnishing goods. This made that section the retail shopping centre of the city. Fourteenth and 23rd Streets were best between Fifth and Sixth Avenues; therefore it should be easy to draw some of the traffic to the east side of Sixth Avenue, as it was the nearest point between these important districts. It is readily seen that this same reasoning would not hold good everywhere. And so, again, owing to the Altman and Macy stores, has the lot value on the north side of 34th Street developed to equal, if not greater, value than on the south side, although, with the exception possibly of 42nd Street, owing to the park, the land value on the north side of almost every other wide business street is worth one-half of that on the south side, or even less.
It is in this way that real estate history is made and should be studied.