The petition has almost 40,000 signatures, but needs more. It reads:

The St. Mark's Bookshop, a vital Lower East Side cultural institution, needs a rent low enough to survive. Join the Cooper Square Committee petitioning Cooper Union, the bookstore's landlord, to give St. Mark's Bookshop a lower rent.

The St. Mark's Bookshop has a long tradition in the Lower East Side and serves an admirable and increasingly rare function. St. Mark's is struggling to pay the market rent that Cooper Union is charging them at 31 3rd Ave. A significant rent concession by Cooper Union could save this irreplaceable neighborhood institution.

The bookstore currently pays $20,000 a month rent! In related news, Michael Moore will be there tonight (9/29) at 7pm to sign his new book "Here Comes Trouble."