Volume 20, Number 33 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | Dec. 28, 2007 - Jan. 3, 2008

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“I feel like I have a new life. I feel safe,” she said.

Downtown Express photo by Robert Kreizel

Making matzo bread at the Streit’s factory on Rivington St.

Matzo factory property will go for a lot of dough

After 82 years at the corner of Rivington and Suffolk Sts., Streit’s is putting its factory buildings on the block and planning to move all of its manufacturing out of the city.

Considering the changes on the Lower East Side over the past 20 years, it’s a wonder that Streit’s is still baking and shipping matzos, matzo meal and matzo farfel in the four adjacent converted tenements on the Lower East Side.

“We’ve been here so long that it’s hard not to be sad that we’re going,” said Alan Adler, whose father and grandfather founded the business which began in 1914 in a little mom-and-pop bakery on Pitt St.

It doesn’t mean the end of the company. Streit’s has been packing its box products, soup mixes and the like for the past few years in New Jersey. But the baking of matzo, the ritual unleavened Passover bread, that takes place in the four adjacent buildings at 148-154 Rivington St., will be moving to an as-yet-undecided location in the New York City area.

The Streit family moved into the first of the four Rivington St. buildings in 1925.

Depending on the season — Passover being the peak time — between 80 and 90 people work at the Rivington St. factory.

The tentative asking price for the four buildings, one six stories, two five stories and one four stories, with a total of 48,000 square feet, is $25 million.

“We haven’t actually listed it with anyone yet,” Adler said, “but we’ve been getting offers for a few years.”

Almost all of the potential buyers have indicated they were planning residential development, some with ground-floor retail, and most were talking about condos, Adler said.

— Albert Amateau

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