April 14, 2006
Hole in the ground
This hole is right next door to our building, which you can see here to the right, and the Sunshine hotel on the other side. They dug down 25 plus feet, well below the foundation of our building. It is sand all the way down, no bedrock, so they had to prop up our building so it would not cave in. We could feel the whole building shake, which was like an earthquake, when the earth movers were cracking through the ground. This is the site of The New Museum of Contemporary Art, which will be a super modern building, as you can see here in the architectural rendering (our building can be seen to the right). You can imagine the impact on the neighborhood.
"The New Museum's move to Broadway in 1983 coincided with the peak of the gallery scene in Soho, though since the artistic center of the city has moved to Chelsea. The recent competition for Eyebeam reinforces this center, but rather than following the crowd the New Museum is attempting to invigorate the Bowery, a zone bordering Chinatown, Nolita, the Lower East Side, the East Village and other neighborhoods along its length. Not necessarily part of any of these neighborhoods, the Bowery's reputation as a nexus for the homeless is evident by the Bowery Mission, two doors down from the site. Over time the Bowery has remained a relative constant in the ever-changing fabric of the surrounding neighborhoods, so the influence of the Museum is not a given but something to watch over time."
I could not disagree more. The building boom on The Bowery, the proliferation of trendy bars and restaurants, the gentrification of side streets, and the soaring property values say quite the opposite.
February 14, 2005
A gift to New York, a saffron river, a processional walk. All of the above and more. Eddy read this posting and commented: "Saw via Forklore that you trekked uptown for the Gates. Nice photos. While we were watching the unfurling at 86th & CPW on Saturday morning, Christo and Jean-Claude pulled up in their limo, got out and spent about 15 minutes talking to the group that had gathered. After telling everyone to respect the park and not to walk on the grass, he promptly walked across the grass for a photo op with the unfurlers. Anyhow, the Gates created a sense of wonder and (dare I say?) happy community among those in the park. Nice. My son said it looked like an orange car wash." Yes, and I would add, like the protective wrapping round buildings under construction and traffic cones and the vests worn by construction workers, and cops directing traffic--in a word, highly visible, an alert.
Posted by BKG at 02:01 PM