Stores that leave their doors open, blasting air conditioning out onto the sidewalk, may offer sweet relief during the current heatwave, but the practice is illegal and the city has started issuing violations.
“There are retailers who are just flouting the statute,” said Eric Goldstein,” an attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council, which found in a survey last summer that 25 percent of city stores had their doors propped open.
Arguing that it’s a waste of precious energy, the city passed a law in 2008 banning stores with more than 4,000 square feet or chains with five local shops from keeping their doors open with the A/C on.
So far this year, nine businesses have been issued $200 violations, according to the city.
Despite the ban, amNewYork found stretches of shops in Times Square, SoHo and elsewhere throwing open their doors.
“It’s a huge green issue,” said Kim Lee, 35, a concerned Upper West Side resident.