82nd Street between 37th Avenue and Roosevelt Avenue is a showcase block in Jackson Heights, Queens. It's festooned with meant-to-be-classy circular metal signs saying "82," and, though traffic goes down the street, it has the feel of a pedestrian mall.
But there's nothing New York-y about this supposedly special New York street. I used to work in this area a number of years back. It had a few bank branches, but was mainly filled with independent shops. Some were a bit low-rent, a bit grungy, but they were indy. Now, the block is cheek by jowl with chains. T-Mobile, Rite Aid, Game Stop, GNC, Payless, Footlocker. 82nd Street could be in Dayton.
Jackson Heights is in identity free-fall. The past couple years or so have seen the shuttered of local landmarks like the Eagle Theatre and Jackson Heights Triplex, the Polk Theatre and, just recently, the Cavalier Restaurant.