Thursday, September 30, 2010

A tribute for Tony Curtis on East Sixth Street

Between Avenue A and Avenue B....

And now, a daytime shot of the incoming Papa John's

Courtesy of EV Grieve First Avenue correspondent Blue Glass.

On First Avenue between 12th Street and 13th Street.


Things to look forward to today! Seven inches of rain?!

Yikes. Per The Wall Street Journal. (Note to self: When did I start getting my weather news from the Journal?)

Also! If you're you're out and about today, then I'd welcome any photos that you might have of this apocalypse. (And this includes photos of the new Papa John's on First Avenue.)

So I'll post weather photos like this... but, uh, better. (Don't worry — it's mine, so I can be mean about it.)

Meanwhile, something to listen to while you bag the sand...

The Staple Singers - A Hard Rain's A Gonna Fall Fal
Found at abmp3 search engine

Tony Curtis, 85

Tony Curtis, born Bernard Schwartz in the Bronx, died just after midnight. Read the Times obit here.

Curtis, as press agent Sidney Falco in EV Grieve favorite "Sweet Smell of Success," at Elpine Drinks at 46th Street and Seventh Avenue. (Read more on this at Jeremiah's Vanishing NY)

[Top photo via]

The photography of John Marshall Mantel

I've only recently been introduced to the work of East Village resident John Marshall Mantel, a freelance photographer who shoots for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.

Here is a selection of his work that I like from his photo blog...

Papa John's invades First Avenue

Well, the cabbie-favorite Medina on First Avenue between 12th Street and 13th Street shuttered back in April...

...and now, a Papa John's is opening in the space at 120 First Ave.

[author unsure of what to write now]

Meet the woman selling NYU to the East Village

Capital's Sarah Laskow checks in with a profile on Alicia Hurley, NYU's vice president for government affairs and community engagement, in a piece titled "Thank you for not hating NYU."

Lots of interesting passages. Here are two from the intro:

With this latest expansion, N.Y.U. is trying harder than ever before to present a friendly face to a neighborhood that for decades has rallied against its development projects. The anger about N.Y.U.’s expansion focuses on the insistence of the university — an entity whose profile is increasingly global, and corporate — that it belongs in the Village, one of the few places in Manhattan, as long-time Villagers say, where you can still see the sky.

Hurley is N.Y.U.’s primary ambassador to its neighbors, and when she descends from the 12th floor of Bobst, she carries that chilly corporatism with her, in the form of a coterie of lawyers, sharp PowerPoint presentations, and bland, purposeful phrases to describe plans that will mean, in some cases, tearing down homes.

[Photo by Sarah Laskow]

There is some cheaper beer at Queen Vic

We noted the opening of Queen Vic on Monday... and many of the comments regarded the eatery's pricy pints of Bass and Guinness for $8.50... Maybe the owners heard us. As the chalkboard sign shows out front, they can be more thrifty....

Sludge metal band looking for drummer, vocalist

Spotted on the Bowery...

If interested, then here's the contact info:

Meanwhile, Rush! Maybe a little too early in the morning for this, but...

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

East Village rezoning receives key approval

This arrived in the inbox from the The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP):

The City Planning Commission voted to approve rezonings in the Far West Village (Washington and Greenwich Streets) and the East Village (3rd and 4th Avenue corridors) ...

Each of these rezonings will go a long way towards protecting and reinforcing the residential character of these neighborhoods, and preventing inappropriate development.

Please note, however, that approval of these rezonings is NOT yet final, and does not yet take effect. They must still be approved by the City Council, which will consider and vote on them in the next few weeks. Once approved at the Council, their provisions will take effect.

The 3rd/4th Avenue rezoning will never again allow buildings like the 26-story NYU dorm on East 12th Street to be built...

The Post helpfully diagrams yesterday's AC accident

Here's their story. As for the photo illustration that accompanied the piece in the paper, a little cartoony...but effective...

Protest planned for reconfigured Avenues

[Image via Neighborhodr]

The reconfigured First Avenue and Second Avenue (bike lanes, bus lanes, pedestrian islands, etc.) have been a popular topic in recent months... and now an LES resident is organizing a protest about the changes...

As you can see from the flyer above, there's a protest planned for Friday, Oct. 15... I contacted Leslie Sicklick, whose name appears on the signs. She's helping organize the event...

Her background:
I was born and raised on the Lower East Side. I am a third-generation Lower East Sider. My dad's parents came here from Russia and lived on the Lower East Side since the 1920. My mother's mother came to the Lower East Side also in the 1920s. Unlike many people, my parents did not move and raised me and my brother down on the Lower East Side. I grew up in the bad days of the 1970s, so I have seen the neighborhood change. I have also been a driver since 1995, often taking my mom, who is handicapped, shopping.

On why she's doing this:
My father raised me to get involved and, if you don't like something, take a stand, which is what I am doing. My biggest complaint is, because of the bike lanes, New York is becoming impossible for drivers. I used to go to 1st Avenue for dinner, shopping and was able to park my car. My other complaint is with how dangerous some bike riders are and how nasty they are. I was walking across the bike lane on 1st Avenue and was almost hit. I was yelled at — that I should get out of the bike lane. Who the hell are these bikers? They probably have not even been living in East Village for very long. What are my rights? I have lived here all my life.

Also, there are fewer spaces for businesses to deliver food, packages. Do bikers bring in business to the City? No they don't, and many stores are losing business because there is less space for people to park and come into the stores.

What she hopes to accomplish:
I guess what I hope to accomplish is to get the message out there to Mayor Bloomberg to change bike lanes so they are not against the sidewalks where people are trying to cross. Bikes don't stop like cars do for lights — they keep going. Bike lanes also attract people on rollerblades, skateboards, runners ... I am not saying all of them are bad.

By Mayor Bloomburg, the idiot, doing this is punishing drivers and rewarding bad behavior of bike riders. Bike riders never stay in bike lanes. Also, how many bike riders are out there compared to drivers? I'd also like to know what is going to happen in the winter when there is snow and ice. What a waste.

This is New York, not Amsterdam. I believe Mayor Bloomberg is killing New York, and changed any character it used to have. I don't miss the City being so bad, but at least it had some character.


The sum of all fears

Awful news yesterday, of course: An AC unit fell six stories from an apartment window, bouncing off an awning below and striking a 67-year-old man on Second Avenue.

While reading through the retweets about this story on Twitter, a theme quickly emerged: Many people said that getting hit in the head by a falling AC was their worst fear/nightmare. Well, sure — why not?

Life always hangs in the balance, particularly in an urban environment. So there's always something to put the fear in us, often driven by the media ... getting mugged ... worrying about terrorism ... falling cranes... exploding manhole covers... finding bedbugs... seeing your new neighbor move in with a drumkit...

As for falling objects, well, in a bit of gallows humor, I told @Eden_Brower that yesterday's incident took my mind off thinking about cars hurtling out of parking garages and landing on me. For awhile, anyway.

Perhaps this is a good reminder ... maybe you want to walk on the other side of Ninth Street where the parking garage is between Third Avenue and Second Avenue....

Roastown Coffee aiming for a liquor license

The CB3/SLA agenda for October is out... and it looks pretty... quiet... Only 18 items as of right now... Here's the whole shebang....

SLA & DCA Licensing Committee
Monday, October 18 at 6:30 p.m. — JASA/Green Residence - 200 East 5th Street at Bowery

Renewal with Complaint History
Spur Tree (LLD3 LLC), 76 Orchard St (wb)

Applications within Resolution Areas
Ichiban 71 Clinton Inc, 71 Clinton St (op)
On the C Pub Inc, 185 Orchard St (op) (removal from 129 Ave C)
JujoMukti Tea Lounge (JujoMukti Inc), 211 E 4th St (wb) (Mamlouk)
Totale Pizza (Totale Pizza Inc), 36 St Marks Pl (wb)
Tre (Jersey Boys LLC), 173 Ludlow St (alt/op/addition of tables & chairs to back patio)
Habibi Lounge (Zaika Restaurant Corp), 198 Ave A (alt/op)

Roastown Coffee St Marks (Roastown Coffee St Marks Inc), 133 2nd Ave (trans/wb) (Pizzanini)

Hmm, so the incoming coffee place wants to serve booze too? Only to pair with desserts, right?

TKR Planners Inc, 108 E 4th St (trans/rw) (Knife & Fork Rest & Wine Bar)
Corp to be Formed, 58 E 1st St (trans/op) (The Elephant)

New Liquor License Applications
Project 6 LLC, 87 Stanton St (op)
Wackywok (Panasia Kitchen Ltd), 129 Ave D (wb)
Rivington Parlor LLC, 155 Rivington St (op)
Amazing 66 Restaurant (Amazing 66 Group Inc), 66 Mott St (wb)
Yuba Group LLC, 105 E 9th St (rw)
Mama Juana Cafe, 107 Norfolk St (op)

Hey, the old Tonic place. What happened to that restaurant with blind waiters that was gonna open here?

CB3 says no to monster bar on Avenue B; plus, good news for Blarney Cove fans

Speaking of bars... last night, Community Board 3 passed the docket from the Sept. 20 subcommittee meeting ... (The one item that we reported on from that meeting: No liquor license for Table 12 on Avenue A and 12th Street.)

A few items of note:

• Justified LLC, 102 1st Ave (alt/op/extend to backyard):

As we reported, the International Bar crew, Molly and Shawn, are taking over the Lilly Coogan's space down the way. CB3 approved the use of the backyard for seating. However, as part of the conditions, they must close the outdoor space by 10 every night — including any time needed for clean-up.

• Corp to be Formed, 14 Ave B (trans/op) (Butterfly Butterfly)

This is the newly ginormous space on the southwest corner of Second Street. The owners wanted to open a "restaurant tavern" ...with hours of operation from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Monday through Wednesday; from 4 p.m. to 4 a.m. Thursday and Fridays; and Noon 'till 4 a.m. on Saturdays. And! They'd employ DJs Friday and Saturday nights.

History didn't help this space. Remember Butterfly? According to CB3, they had a history of citations for unlicensed security, unlicensed cabaret, unlicensed sidewalk cafe (was anything licensed?). You get the idea. The owner of the new space, in the eyes of CB3, has "failed to demonstrate that he has sufficient experience to operate a restaurant-bar of this size in this area or addressing any of the prevailing noise or traffic concerns." Plus! He was unwilling to close earlier than 2 a.m.


• Blarney Cove (510 E 14th Pub Inc), 510 E 14th St (op)

Remember the hyperlocal East Village blogger who nearly shit the bed about what might be happening with this? Fool!

This is a transfer from the Blarney Cove's now-deceased owner to his daughter-in-law. According to the CB3, the Blarney Cove will continue its current method of operation and retain its name.


Police officer injured looking for intruder on St. Mark's Place

Bob Arihood shared this report ... as well as the photos... Around 3:30 yesterday afternoon, a resident in an apartment on Seventh Street noticed a man on the fire escape at 126 St Mark's Place building across the backyard. The man broke the window of an upper floor apartment and entered. The Seventh Street resident called the police.

Several NYPD units, including the 9th Precinct commander Deputy Inspector Lehr, arrived on Seventh Street, St Mark's Place and in Tompkins Square Park in response to the call. Officers went to the apartment that had been broken into and also up to the roof above the apartment.

"One investigating officer exited the apartment onto the fire escape and , we were told , slipped on some broken glass and fell through the opening in the fire escape down the fire escape stairs from the 5th floor to the 4th floor . Luckily the officer was able to stop his free fall descent part way down the fire escape stairs ."

Bob said that the officer, far left in glasses, did not appear to be seriously injured beyond some scrapes, cuts and perhaps some bruises, though he was taken to a hospital in an ambulance.

The man who broke into the apartment was gone before the police arrived on the scene.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

CB3 approves resolution limiting the number of concerts in Tompkins Square Park

Well, we discussed this item earlier today. (Read it all here.) And tonight, Community Board 3 voted to pass the resolution that will, in part: "schedule amplified concerts only one day per weekend, and, in addition, schedule some of the loud concerts in other areas where people will not be as impacted, such as East River Park."

There wasn't any Board discussion on the item. And no one came out tonight to speak in opposition of this measure. Curious what this means for, say, The Howl! Festival, which is on consecutive weekend days. Perhaps the staged events will have to be kept to one day...

As an old EV Grieve friend once said, "whoever controls the Park controls the future."

Previously on EV Grieve:
Movement afoot to limit the number of concerts in Tompkins Square Park

[Photo via]

Winebar open tonight

Winebar is open tonight on Second Avenue near Fourth Street.... Earlier today, as you know, an AC unit tumbled six stories from a window and landed on the Winebar canopy. A 67-year-old man was hospitalized for head injuries after the unit reportedly bounced off the canopy and struck him.

People are sitting on the sidewalk under the awning... Why not? What are the chances that this could happen again right here anyway?

More on the man injured by the falling AC

Per the Post:

According to neighbors, [Anthony] Franzese is a Vietnam veteran who was recently evicted from his apartment on the third floor and was supposed to have vacated by this Thursday.


Things to do late this afternoon: Watch for tornadoes

The Weather Channel says the area is under a Tornado Watch until 6 p.m.

No worries. I'm on top of the situation... just as long as I can get this thing to work that I found in the trash on St. Mark's...

Man injured by falling AC on Second Avenue

[Via EaterNY]

Word is spreading of an AC unit that tumbled six stories and landed on the Winebar canopy on Second Avenue at Fourth Street. The above photo is from Eater.

According to WCBS2:

Around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, 67-year-old Tony Franzese was walking his dog as he does every morning. When an air conditioner fell out of a 6th floor window at 2nd Avenue and 3rd Street, it landed on an awning apparently bounced off and hit Franzese in the head.

He suffered a severe head laceration and was taken to Bellevue Hospital.

Carmen Barreto lived in the building for 38 years and told me her son helped clean blood off the victim. “He was very upset and nervous. He said ‘Ma, the air conditioner fall down onto the head’ and I said ‘My God he must be dead’,” she explained.

“He sits here with the dog. He has a little glass of wine. He’s friends with the owner of the place here, and he’s a very nice man,” said resident Rachel Costa.

A resident who lives in the building shot this video:

10009 is the 110th most expensive zip code in America

So, if 10003 is the 22nd most expensive zip code in America, then where does leave the other part of the EV zip — 10009? Well, as the headline probably tipped you off, it's No. 110, according to Forbes.

Per Forbes for 10009, whose boundaries are shown in the graphic above:

Median Home Price: $1,459,511
Median Price Change: -2%
Average Days On Market : 265
Inventory : 35 properties
Median Household Income: $40,176

Nothing against Stuy Town, but can we trade trade them to 10003 for Second Avenue and a street to be named later?

Breaking: The East Village is expensive (thanks 10003!)

Curbed points out this morning that the East Village is now the 22nd Most Expensive Neighborhood in America. This is part of the America's Most Expensive ZIP Codes listicle in Forbes.

And it's specifically for the 10003 zip code, which extends west to Fifth Avenue and north to 20th Street. And where:

Median home price:

Median household income:

Anyway, here are the 10003 boundaries:

At least we beat those pussies from Gibson Island, Md., who came in at No. 23.

Movement afoot to limit the number of concerts in Tompkins Square Park

[Photo of Star Fucking Hipsters by Bob Arihood]

The full Community Board 3 meets tonight ... among the agenda items for their consideration: The number of weekend afternoon concerts in Tompkins Square Park.

The following is from a DRAFT AGENDA. THIS HAS NOT BEEN VOTED ON BY FULL BOARD AND is not a a CB resolution or position:

WHEREAS, the Parks Department permits concerts in Tompkins Square Park in an area very close to 7th Street; and

WHEREAS, there are apartment buildings with many families on 7th Street directly across from the concert area; and

WHEREAS, there is no structure to baffle the sound; and

WHEREAS, some concerts do not impact the neighboring areas, but others are extremely loud and assault the senses, including inside people’ homes; and

WHEREAS, the Parks Department formerly had a policy limiting the number of concerts each month, but now appears to book concerts without a plan and sometimes back-to-back on Saturday and Sunday; and

WHEREAS, formerly there were PEP, NYPD, and sometimes DEP monitoring, there currently is no enforcement or monitoring; and

WHEREAS, people in this area suffer from abnormal levels of noise pollution every weekend;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that CB 3 requests that the Parks Department return to some amplified sound-free weekends, schedule amplified concerts only one day per weekend, and, in addition, schedule some of the loud concerts in other areas where people will not be as impacted, such as East River Park; and

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Parks Department arrange for both PEP and DEP monitoring for potentially loud concerts (based on previous complaints and/or monitoring); and

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Parks Department not schedule any loud concerts that have had complaints from the community directly across from residential areas, e.g., across from 7th Street, without providing or requiring a sound baffling structure.

[Howl! photo by Blue Glass]

CB3's Parks, Recreation, Cultural Affairs, Landmarks, & Waterfront Committee discussed this issue on Sept. 16. The Shadow's Chris Flash, who, along with several other people, have helped produced and promote shows in the Park since 1993, spoke at this meeting.

"I addressed the committee, assuring all that we are concerned neighbors who don't want to disturb our neighbors," Flash told me. "One thing we all could agree on was the suggestion that the Parks Department provide a portable barrier to direct sound away from the Seventh Street side of the park. I pointed out that when the Parks Department demolished the permanent Tompkins Square Park bandshell in 1992, we were promised the unlimited availability of a portable stage on a flatbed truck. This proved to be a lie."

As he said, the events that he and his friend produce in Tompkins Square Park individually and sometimes collectively raise important social and political awareness, celebrating the vitality of our neighborhood in the face of skyrocketing rents and gentrification driving out small businesses and long-time residents.

"We hope that we can resolve things before they get to the point of lawsuits and demonstrations, but we will not allow the use of our Park to be restricted by a self-appointed sound-nazi who has no authority to change or create policy or impinge upon the free speech of others," Flash said.

Meanwhile there are shows scheduled for Oct. 10, Oct. 23 and Oct. 24 that will go on as planned. Flash and company have already arranged on their own to create a sound barrier around the drum kits and to change placement of speakers so as to better direct sound away from Seventh Street.

Said Flash: "We want to respect our neighbors, but we don't want a fucking police state to arbitrarily enforce sound limits on music that some may not find appealing."

Taras Shevchenko Place and Hall Place

An EV Grieve reader noted that Taras Shevchenko Place, which runs alongside St. George's Ukrainian Church and the Cooper Union between Seventh Street and Sixth Street, has another name: Hall Place. Well, yes the Hall Place sign is new.

Back in 2001, Cooper Union officials had proposed de-mapping Taras Shevchenko Place, named for the Ukrainian poet, artist and activist. De-mapping would "remove the street from existence in all official matters, and from all official documents."

I lost track of that story... looks like Hall Place is sharing an existence with it for now.

According to Forgotten New York, City Council changed the name of Hall Place to Taras Shevchenko Place in 1978.

And who or what is Hall?

Per the Times from January 1999:

The street that now carries the name of Shevchenko, Ukraine's ''freedom symbol,'' was first known as Hall Street and then as Hall Place, after Charles Henry Hall, a Harlem landowner who sold the property to the city on Dec. 23, 1828.

Retro beers at Yankee Stadium

Oh. Chalk this up as one of those "posts that I never got around to posting." Anyway... you can buy retro beers at Yankee Stadium... a mere $9 for an old-timey 16-ounce can of Schlitz or Pabst... As everyone in the line was saying, "these aren't retro prices..."

No griping... someone has to help pay for AJ Burnett's contract...