New York City was once a haven for starving artists and burgeoning music scenes, a city where the creatives could afford to not only live, but to build a community. Unfortunately, those days are long gone. Any fresh-faced trust fund kid from the Upper East Side could tell you that much. But for some reason, a simple stroll along the Bowery or through the East Village still makes us sad and a little bit nostalgic for a time these streets weren't so scrubbed clean and gentrified to the point of irrecognition. In their book, Store Front: The Disappearing Face of New York, photographers James and Karla Murray capture just how much the city could change in a mere 10 years. Click through for some startling before and after shots and ask yourself, which New York do you prefer?

[Photo by Jack Vartoogian/Getty Images] [Photos via]