The Lower East Side of Manhattan has a long history of emigration and reinvention. The Essex Crossing development going on at the moment is redefining the area yet again, along with a smattering of high-end hotels and condos. The area still has its share of New York grit so it is a fascinating place to walk around.
While out taking photos, I was curious about the number of outdoor ATMs the area had. Every bodega in New York has an ATM in their store, but this was different. They were attached to the sides of buildings and there seemed to be hundreds of them—all different. With a history of poverty and language differences, it is not surprising established banks inadequately serviced this area. A lot of businesses are cash based and building owners can make some extra money by providing these machines.
As the area morphs into it’s new phase and more upscale shops and restaurants go cashless, will these ATMs go the way of the Dodo bird?