Duane Reade Closes UES Store on 2nd Ave, says prescription info sent to 3rd Ave. store

Latest closure follows earlier UES closure of Yorkville store at 1675 Third Ave. this past November. Over 90 of the chain’s stores have closed in the city since 2019 but a spokesperson said customer prescription info transfers automatically to a nearby store.

| 21 Mar 2023 | 11:47

Another big Duane Reader store on the east side of Manhattan has shut down. The latest is a fairly large Duane Reade on Second Ave. between 45th and 46th Street which shut down on March 9th.

Residents at a recent 17th precinct NYPD community counsel meeting worried that shoplifting played a role in the decision by the corporate parent company to close the store.

A spokesperson for the parent company Walgren’s did not mention shoplifting as a factor when contacted by Our Town. “When faced with the difficult decision to close a store, several factors are taken into account,” the spokesperson said. “Things like our existing footprint of stores, dynamics of the local market, changes in the buying habits of our patients and customers, and more are considered” said the spokespeson who finally got back to us on March 20 confirming the March 9 closure that Our Town had previously reported.

The spokesperson said that customers do not need to take any action regarding their prescription info since it automatically will be transferred to a nearby store.

“When a store closes, in most cases, patients do not need to take any action. Their pharmacy files are automatically transferred to a nearby location. In this instance, patient pharmacy files were transferred to our location at 711 3rd Ave....Patients receive notice about any changes through mail and other means to provide details about continued access to their prescriptions and other services.”

An employee in the store prior to its closing said that employees were being transferred to other nearby Duane Reade locations including the story on 711 Third Ave. “Nobody is losing a job,” she said.

It is the second big Duane Reade store to close in recent months on the East Side. In November, the company shut down a Yorkville store at 1675 Third Ave which stretched a whole city block between 93rd Street and 94th Street.

Between 2019 and 2022, Duane Reade shut down 90 stores in New York City.

Duane Reade is considered a quintessential New York chain since it started in 1960 by Abraham, Eli and Jack Cohen with a store and a warehouse between Duane Street and Reade Street in lower Manhattan. They sold it in 1992 for $239 million to Bain Capital and it passed through several financial owners before being bought by rival Walgreen’s in 2010 for $1 billion. Walgreen’s continues to own it.