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CVS Closing Location on 84th and Lexington Ave

Yet another Upper East Side CVS is closing.

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CVS corporate confirmed with Patch that the store at 1241 Lexington Avenue (at 84th Street) will permanently close its doors in May. This is the same store that was the scene of a violent attack on an employee and the smashing of all its windows last November.

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This is the third location on the Upper East Side to shut down in the last six months. The large Lenox Hill store on 64th and Second Ave. closed in October and the CVS pharmacy inside the Target at 150 East 86th Street closed just last month. Prescriptions from the Target location have been transferred to the CVS at 1294 Lexington Avenue (at 87th Street); those currently being filled at 1241 Lexington Ave will be transferred here as well.

The now-closed CVS pharmacy at Target.

Although the new store is just up the block, the neighborhood is densely populated and the store at 1294 Lexington Ave. will be handling a much larger volume of prescriptions. On a Tuesday afternoon, a line of five to six people formed at the pharmacy of the soon-to-be-closed 84th Street location. When asked about the impending closure, one customer told East Side Feed, “It’s a bummer,” and that she’ll have to find a new place to get her medications.

This store’s closure is part of a larger company move to reduce retail locations. In November 2021, CVS announced it would be closing 900 stores, 10% of their locations in the U.S., by the end of 2024. Just this January they announced that closing dozens of Target pharmacies would be part of that move.

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The trend isn’t limited to CVS. Rite Aid filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last year and subsequently began closing stores. Walgreens, which owns Duane Reade and is the largest pharmacy chain in the country, announced a similar plan to downsize.

While CVS has cited financial losses and an overabundance of pharmacy locations (or “pharmacy density”) as the reasons for the closures, experts look at other causes that may play a part. In late 2022, CVS and Walgreens agreed to pay more than $10 billion in opioid lawsuit settlements to several states. In addition, both companies face mounting competition from big box stores like Walmart and Costco, as well as online retail giant Amazon.


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