Storefront Transformer. Pop-up retail to activate underutilized spaces

"We make it quick and easy to turn underutilized storefronts into anything you can imagine. We give entrepreneurs and artists an easy and affordable way to showcase their work. The neighborhood gets a variety of vibrant programmed uses in a previously vacant space. Landlords get short-term rental income and increased visibility to help them find a longer-term tenant for their space. It is a win-win proposition for multiple stakeholders."

Made in Lower East Side (miLES) is a multidisciplinary start-up that transforms empty retail space into community hubs. The collective devised Storefront Transformer, a modular system that can be used by different local initiatives.
"The miLES Storefront Transformer is a versatile set of furnishing and amenities to program any storefront - essentially a 6ft cube that can be easily transported and subdivided to roll through any storefront door. When unfolded, the Transformer provides functional elements such as shelving, partitions, tables, seats, stage, as well as infrastructure such as lighting, WIFI, power strips, speakers, projectors, and PA system so you have all the basic ingredients to create your own pop-up!"
MiLES notes that "despite the rapid gentrification of the neighborhood, there are still over 200 vacant storefronts in the Lower East Side." Their motivation is to establish a favourable situation for locals and landlords, essentially using the Storefront Transformer to convert these under-utilized spaces into affordable options for small business and organizations, creating economic opportunities for the neighbourhood, while also providing short-term rental income to landlords.