Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Today in Porsches being towed near Extra Place

Photo by Bobby Williams.

Second Avenue pipe break conjures up memories of the Icicle Audi, sort of

This afternoon around 3, several readers sent along word of some gushing water on Second Avenue near St. Mark's Place... Bobby Williams was on the scene, where workers confirmed (duh) the broken pipe...

Good thing this didn't happen during the winter. ICICLE AUDI!

Downed-tree tour continues....

We'll continue our depressing downed-tree tour in Tompkins Square Park... After the storm passed, the most visible downed tree was in Tompkins Square Park inside the Ninth Street entrance...

[Dave on 7th]

... a scene that attracted onlookers throughout Sunday...

[blue glass]

Crews finished this work up yesterday...

...the loss of a tree aside ... the collateral damage seemed minimal...

Illegal work continues at former Mundial space on East 12th Street

The most recent bars to inhabit 505 E. 12th St. — Mundial and Totem — were nightmares for some nearby residents here on the block just east of Avenue A.

Recently, residents have noted that workers are busy renovating the space... which is fine, except that there aren't any work permits on file with the DOB.

Per one neighbor: "The work furiously continues on the former Mundial space ... with no sign of a work permit. They were working on the space well into the night last night."

"They got a lumber delivery a little after 8 this morning, and one of the guys who is working on the space is hustling to get it all inside."

"Why do I get the feeling that whatever this space is going to be, it isn’t going to be a good neighbor?"

People should know by now: You don't fuck with 12th Street.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Another nightmare bar for 505 E. 12th St.?

Last night's CB3 recap: Residents 1, Bar Owners 0

Here comes the fear again: 505 E. 12th St. back on the market

The East Village will lose a parking lot and gain an apartment building

Today is the last day for the Manhattan Parking Group at 74-84 Third Ave. at 12th Street. (The number to the lot has already been disconnected.) Multiple lot workers have confirmed the closure.

A handful of cars remain on the lot this morning.

Several EVG readers who have parked their car here received phone calls a few weeks ago saying that the lot was closing. Per one reader: "I asked what was going on and they said some wealthy Cuban man bought that lot and the building next door. The guy claims he saw all the drawings for the new building that is going up and that the architect had come by with the drawings."

We've heard these rumors, too, from various sources. One of the parking lot attendees — always reliable! — said that the new building will be 20 floors. Not sure about that claim. (Read more on this here.) An NYU spokesperson already said that they were NOT the new property owners, listed as 74-84 Third Ave. Corp.

Anyway, we're waiting to hear more details from official channels, including a look at the rendering.

Meanwhile, haven't you always wondered what was behind those two single windows and grubby curtains in the floors above the old Yummy House?

About The Bean's East Village expansion

[The Bean/Facebook]

On Monday, we broke the news that Bean is expanding its East Village presence to include a storefront on First Avenue at Ninth Street... to go alongside their original location at First Avenue and Third Street, Broadway and East 12th Street and the Crazy Landlord building.

In response to the post, Guy, The Bean's general manager, left the following comment:

It's a pretty exciting time for The Bean and we wanted to let the East Village community know what's going on.

The Plan: we're opening two more cafes around the East Village. We don't really think of this as an "aggressive" business move as The Bean remains an independently owned and operated neighborhood business. We haven't "sold out" or "gone corporate" and we've had this expansion in mind for sometime. Our cafes' walls will still feature the artwork and photography of East Village artists and photographers and we're super excited to ably to service more of our friendly & loyal customers in the East Village — old and new — whether they're just stopping in for a quick cup of coffee or penning the next great American novel sitting in one of our cafes.

Ultimately we'd rather open a business to service the neighborhood than have another bank or fast food restaurant further de-characterize the East Village.

The Bean remains committed to our customers, their dogs and — as always — we're open to suggestions. Just no poetry readings. :)

General Manager, The Bean

At Fork in the Road, our friend Rebecca Marx mentions Joe the Art of Coffee, an independently owned shop with seven locations in different parts of the city. "So while it's nice to see East Village storefronts being snapped up by a local business that isn't Duane Reade, one wonders if the Bean's owners would do better to spread out the wealth a little bit," she writes.

Some readers have chimed in on the topic on the previous post. A reader left this comment last night:

"2 new shops in the neighborhood opening simultaneously is clearly aggressive, especially since one is on the same block as Mud

The amount of money it takes to pull this off is huge. Market saturation is a ruthless corporate strategy, mom & pop shops don't have the resources and are usually a bit more sensitive to their way is it independent."

Less shade now in Tompkins Square Park

As you know, Hurricane Irene took out many trees in the neighborhood this part weekend... we lost a handful in Tompkins Square Park too, including my favorite right in the middle of the Park (an area some people have dubbed Crusty Meadow) ...

I took these shots in the late spring... thinking it would make for a gag post, such as "tree-bending culprit captured on film!"

And after the storm ...

Yesterday, Bobby Williams noted the workers have removed the tree...

Which means more sun and space for sunbathing here in the quad...

Feeling the loss at La Plaza Cultural

Meanwhile, many residents are mourning the loss of the majestic willow tree that has graced La Cultural Plaza since the 1970s ... The winds and soaking rain of Hurricane Irene helped to uproot the tree on Avenue C at Ninth Street...

[Dave on 7th]

EV Grieve reader Jill Woodward shared these photos...

At the Times yesterday, Colin Moynihan wrote about the significance of the tree to the neighborhood.

The gardeners who run La Plaza, as it is called in the neighborhood, staved off several attempts at the garden’s development in the 1980s and ’90s. During those battles, the tall willow was embraced as a symbol of resistance and its likeness appeared on fliers and posters urging neighbors to oppose planned takeovers.

You can read more about the tree's symbolism here.

Melanie has another shot of the downed tree here at East Village Corner.

I've exchanged emails with Ross Martin, who's in charge of general maintenance and capital projects for La Plaza. I've been trying to get an assessment of the damage, and some possible next steps. Unfortunately, in the last few days, he hasn't been able to get anyone to take a look at the tree, and he has tried everyone from the the Parks Department to Rosie Mendez's office to professional tree services, to name a few.

[Fall 2010]

Saifee Hardware isn't accepting any Irene-related returns or exchanges

A reader unhappily notes that Saifee Hardware on First Avenue at Seventh Street won't take back any Irene-related supplies — not even for store credit.

If you can make out the sign...

All emergency items purchased on Thursday, Friday & Saturday including:


No exchanges and no returns

So I may hold off before trying to return the eggs and Fruity Pebbles to Key.

DOH temporarily closes Friend House on Third Avenue

Yesterday, the DOH temporarily closed Friend House, the Asian bistro on Third Avenue at 13th Street. Officials haven't posted the latest results online yet. In April, Friend House received 32 points, including for "Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility's food and/or non-food areas."

'Greetings From Tim Buckley' filming in the East Village

[Photo on Fifth Street and Avenue A via a very special tipster]

Expect to see crews for the new Jeff Buckley-Tim Buckley biopic filming around the East Village in the coming weeks. We've heard that they've been scouting some familiar locations.

Now! A quick synopsis of the film:

Greetings from Tim Buckley follows the true story of the days leading up to Jeff Buckley’s eminent 1991 performance at his father’s tribute concert in St. Ann’s Church. Through a romance with a young woman working at the concert, he learns to embrace all of his feelings toward the father who abandoned him — longing, anger, forgiveness, and love. Culminating a cathartic performance of his father’s most famous songs, Jeff’s debut stuns the audience and launches his career as one of the greatest young musicians of his time.

And, well, Penn Badgley of "Gossip Girl" fame — and no stranger to the East Village! — is playing Jeff.

Anyway, doesn't seem like that long ago that Jeff Buckley was playing at Sin-é at 122 St. Mark's Place in the early 1990s.

[Jeff Buckley circa 1993 via]

The St. Mark's version of Sin-é closed in 1996. Jeff Buckley drowned in Memphis in 1997.

Updated: Our friends at This Ain't the Summer of Love note in the comments that Anthrax bassist Frank Bello will portray Richard Hell in the movie.


EV Grieve readers Meaghan Burke and Liz Prutting send along the above shot of a traveler/crusty setting up a bunk in an East Village stairwell ... They asked some questions that other readers have been curious about: "He was ... playing games on his smartphone. Where does he charge this phone? Who pays the bill? Games use up a lot of data..."

Cool Gear of some sort for Second Avenue

Something called Cool Gear is opening on Second Avenue near Fourth Street... it replaces the dry cleaners that closed in, what, late spring? Early summer? The awning went up last week... and no one is ever around the store when we walk by. So no word yet just what kind of Cool Gear this will be.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Today in (unsexy) photo shoots in New York City Marble Cemetery

Well! This is more like it! For those of you who were offended by the photos from the shoot on St. Mark's Place earlier today... EV Grieve reader Spike passes along shots from the New York City Marble Cemetery on East Second Street...

It's a photo shoot for the new Arcade Fire side project. Kidding! The old-timey photographer is Hal Hirshorn. All the people are from the Merchant House Museum.

Today in (sexy) photo shoots on St. Mark's Place

At Avenue A... Photos courtesy of BaHa... not sure what the product is ... very likely it wouldn't fit me anyway...

No word is this shoot is related to this sign!

On Avenue A, a call to abolish heel highs

This morning... via Dave on 7th...

Per the sign: "Outlaw the manufacture and sale of high heel shoes They break ankle and cause maximum pain, shoes without socks not a joke"

Big Gay Ice Cream Shop opens Saturday at noon

On Seventh Street between Avenue A and First Avenue. Via Twitter.


Your CB3/SLA agenda for September: A renewal for Heather's; a new bar for the Coop?

The CB3/SLA Licensing Committee agenda is now out (thought not yet online) ... the meeting is Monday, Sept. 19 at 6:30 p.m. JASA/Green Residence, 200 E. Fifth St. at Bowery.

Not the juiciest of agendas as far as juicy agendas go ... here's a look at some of the East Village-related items... we'll have more on some of these later... (And, for people curious about a new place from Mars Bar owner Hank Penza, there's nothing on this agenda that fits that description.) ...

Renewal with Complaint History
• Heather's (Ariel Inc), 506 E 13 St (op)

This was a scratch from last month's docket. Heathers went before the CB3/SLA committee in September 2009 ... and there was a lengthy discussion. The Times checked in with a lengthy article in January 2007 about the ongoing noise issues between the bar and neighbors.

• Amsterdam Billiards & Bar (Corner Billiards Corp), 110 E 11th St (op)

Always classy!

Applications within Resolution Areas

• Yankee Pizza Restaurant Inc, 181 Ave C aka 647 E 11th St (wb)

Part of the growing Yankee Deli empire.

• Cornerstone Café (AO Café & Restaurant LLC), 17 Ave B (wb)

The newish cafe at Second Street that was once La Bonne Bouffe.


• Diablo Royale (East Village Café & Restaurant LLC), 167 Ave A (alt/op)

• Hea Hea Bar & Restaurant (Friend Tri New York Inc), 145 E 13th St aka 106 3rd Ave (alt/op)

• Heartbreak Restaurant (Christos Restaurant LLC), 29 E 2nd St aka 37 2nd Ave (up/op)

New Liquor License Applications

• Cooper Square Hotel (CooperAB LLC), 25-33 Cooper Sq (op)

Hmmm... a new bar for the Coop?

• Ichibantei LLC, 401 E 13th St (wb)

The octopus ball eatery just east off First Avenue. Anyone ever eat here?

• Ciao for Now, 521-523 E 12th St (wb)

b=beer only | wb=wine & beer only | op=liquor, wine, & beer | alt=alterations | trans=transfer | up=upgrades

Tompkins Square Park chainsaw massacre

As these photos by Bobby Williams show, workers spent a good part of yesterday cleaning up the Irene-damaged trees in Tompkins Square Park...

Melanie notes at East Village Corner that five trees were lost during the storm.

Bob Arihood has some cleanup photos here.

We hope to have an update on the downed trees at La Plaza Cultural later today or tomorrow.