Sunday, January 31, 2016

Report of a fire at 124 Avenue C

There was a report of a fire late this afternoon at 124 Avenue C... at the southeast corner of Eighth Street ... in the building that houses the laundromat...

The FDNY was on it quickly, and there doesn't appear to be any major damage at the moment, per eyewitness accounts ... ( and there isn't any mention of the fire on the @FDNY Twitter account... )

Thanks to @cj__ts for the photos...

Week in Grieview

[Hat season outside Gem Spa via Derek Berg]

Stories posted on EVG this past week included...

PYT has closed on the Bowery after just three months (Monday)

Shoveling snow for a cause (Wednesday ... Thursday)

Here's the 6-story condo building for East Sixth Street (Thursday)

RIP Cowboy Jim (Friday)

Cafecito is closing for good on Avenue C (Friday)

Out and About with Leslie McEachern, owner of Angelica Kitchen (Wednesday)

DF Mavens has closed on Second Avenue and St. Mark's Place (Wednesday)

Hole watch on Avenue C and East Sixth Street (Friday)

PP&J as art (Friday)

Rent increase KOs Poppy's Gourmet Corner (Saturday)

Alumni Day: Cycle 19 of the Centre-fuge Public Art Project is underway (Monday)

More David Bowie tributes (Tuesday)

Broadway Panhandler to close (Wednesday)

Virgola wants to open a location on Avenue B (Wednesday)

NYPD cruiser stuck in snow in Tompkins Square Park (Monday)

Teavana turning into a Starbucks on Broadway (Tuesday)

Woman has her face slashed on the 6 train at Bleecker Street (Monday)

Here's Suffolk Arms (Friday)

Landmarked East 13th Street building sells for $21.5 million (Tuesday)

Police shoot man with knife in Jacob Riis housing complex on East Sixth Street (Tuesday)

The $20k penthouses that rose from the ZP Auto Repair Shop on Lafayette (Monday)

Coming soon signage arrives at Mamoun's new St. Mark's Place home (Monday)

Reader report: Why does this block of East Fourth Street smell? (Friday)

Ben Shaoul's 100 Avenue A ready for tours (Thursday)

... and we didn't get a chance to mention that the former Sunset Cleaners on East Third Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue has been reborn as Sunsweet Cleaners...

An EVG reader and Sunrise customer reported in October 2014 that the landlord (Tomar Equities) offered Susan the Sunset owner a 5-year-lease renewal with a 66-percent rent increase.

Today in photogenic dogs on Avenue A

Avenue A and East Fourth Street today... apparently the dog just came from a photoshoot #fashion ...

Report of a fire this morning at 100 E. 7th St.

Several readers have told us about an early-morning fire at 100 E. Seventh St. between Avenue A and First Avenue. The official FDNY Twitter account announced the fire at 7:17 a.m., and gave the "under control" at 7:30 a.m.

Unfortunately, we don't have any further information about the cause of the fire, which started in a second-floor apartment. A reader at the scene said that there didn't appear to be any injuries.

You can see the fire-damaged unit in the photo from later this morning...

[Photo by Derek Berg]

H/T Bill the Libertarian Anarchist

How about some help to rescue Lucy

Here on East Fifth Street between Avenue A and Avenue B...

There's a sign dated yesterday on the gate about a cat named Lucy living back here somewhere...

The person who wrote the sign would like to rescue Lucy, who, in the aftermath of the last week's blizzard, "was not able to eat for 5 days. She was very weak and meowing a lot..."

The gate is between the newish residential building at No. 532 and No. 536 (where Minca Ramen Factory remains closed for repairs). Anyone know who oversees this space? Is it part of No. 532 or 536?

When psychics close: If you're of the mind to rent this space on East 2nd Street

We have no idea when this storefront closed on East Second Street between Avenue A and Avenue B... an EVG reader mentioned it to us, noting that it was rare to see a psychic close up shop.

Well, there have been a few to shutter... like here and here ... and here?

Interestingly/impressively enough the psychic stayed in business for almost two years after Jared Kushner's Westminster Management bought the buildings here at 170-174 E. Second St. (Other tenants didn't fare so well.)

Per the retail listing, rent on the 250-square-foot space is available upon request. From that listing: "Bathroom in place and some concession towards work is available. Most uses are considered including non cooking food use."

Rock is Dead? at John Varvatos

EVG reader Cheap Trick took this photo outside the John Varvatos storefront at 315 Bowery this morning... per Cheap Trick: "The windows are boarded up. Is it closing?"

There's nothing on JV's social media accounts noting a closure... or any kind of special in-store concert event, as they've had in the past with their Bowery Live series... The Rock is Dead? signage suggests some kind of concert. (Iggy Pop-Josh Homme is the rumor.)

The storefront opened at the site of the former CBGB here in April 2008.

Updated 5:20 p.m.

Here's another look via EVG reader Margarita...

Updated 2/1

An EVG reader shared this invite for Wednesday evening...

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Poppy's Gourmet Corner closes for good after tomorrow

Poppy's Gourmet Corner on Avenue A at East 12th Street will be closing up after the business day tomorrow, EVG reader Shawn Chittle reports...Owner Mike Attal told Shawn that the rent is too high now...

Jared Kushner's Westminster Management is the landlord. This has become an increasingly valuable chunk of retail with Douglas Steiner's mixed-use building with ground-floor retail and 82 market-rate condos going up on the surrounding property.

Diversions: The return @ElBloombito

News of a possible Mike Bloomberg presidential campaign has prompted the return of the parody Twitter account @ElBloombito ...

Inwood resident Rachel Figueroa is behind the account that pokes fun of the former mayor's uninspired attempts to speak Spanish ... @ElBloombito launched during Hurricane Irene in 2011.

Re/code published an interview with Figueroa on Tuesday. You can read that here.

Anyway, this may be my favorite from the barrage of recent tweets...

Former Funkiberry space continues to look funki/funky

The empty storefront has looked this way for a little while here on Third Avenue at East 12th Street... however, it looked particularly photogenic in this morning's sunlight...

The colorful FroYo establishment closed in March 2015. Funkiberry opened in June 2014.

The asking rent for the corner space was $21,321.00 per month. However, the property is now off the market. So perhaps a new business is on the way. (Cue Beer Store comment!)

Until then...

Previously on EV Grieve:
Hey, the Funkiberry sign is up on 3rd Avenue

Hey, Funkiberry is now open on 3rd Avenue

Hey, the Funkiberry space is for lease on 3rd Avenue

Hey, the Funkiberry closed on 3rd Avenue

Report: East 6th Street slashing suspect blames victim (and the government) for attack

Francis Salud, who is under arrest for the apparent random slashing of a man on East Sixth Street on Jan. 16, spoke to a Post reporter yesterday at the Manhattan Detention Complex.

Per that conversation:

Salud told The Post he was on his way to score some pot when victim Anthony Christopher Smith walked toward him near Third Avenue and East Sixth Street on Jan. 16.

“Yo, Jamaica, you got some of that good bud?” Salud said he asked Smith.

“I don’t even f–k with you gooks,” Smith responded, according to Salud.

Salud added, “The government is profiting from the conflict between Caucasians and African-Americans, and it’s getting worse.”

Smith strongly denied that he spoke with his attacker. "There was no conversation," he told the Post. "I was attacked."

As previously reported, Smith underwent eight hours of surgery, and needed nearly 150 stitches for the wound from his right ear to his lips. He has partial paralysis on the right side of his face because several nerves were severed.


Friday, January 29, 2016

You can never go Back

The Coathangers have a new record coming out this April ... until then, you can check out a track from that release titled "Watch Your Back."

And the Atlanta-based trio will be out at Baby's All Right on March 29...

Cafecito closes Sunday on Avenue C

After 14 years in business at 185 Avenue C between East 11th Street and East 12th Street, Cafecito will be closing its doors for good after service on Sunday.

Several regulars shared news of the Cuban restaurant's closure, and a staffer confirmed the news. There will be a closing celebration Sunday night at 9. All Cafecito friends and fans are invited.

As we understand it, business had been tapering off ... and the Cafecito team didn't want to see it go out of business slowly and sadly — "dwindling into another solemn East Village story," as one source put it. In any event, the owners aren't leaving the neighborhood — they also run Royale at 157 Avenue C between East Ninth Street and East 10th Street.

Like other businesses in the area, Cafecito was hit hard during Sandy in October 2012. Longtime manager Manny Garcia was featured in an Out and About in the East Village here in March 2013: "There was four feet of water in the building and we were closed almost a month. We’re still trying to recover financially. We had to replace everything. We didn’t have power for 3 weeks and to this day we still don’t have Verizon."

One nearby resident praised Cafecito's management for all their help through the years. "They could not have been any more supportive of local causes."

There is already a suitor lined up for the space. An applicant will appear before CB3's SLA committee next month. At this point, the applicant's identity hasn't been revealed.

EVG file photo

Tompkins Square Park holiday tree produces ornament offspring

Wait, we don't remember the tree having any ornaments ... just lights. Hmm.

Photo this afternoon via Goggla.

Reader report: Why does this block of East 4th Street smell?

From the EVG inbox...concerning East Fourth Street between Avenue B and Avenue C

A terrible smell has been lingering since the blizzard like a dead dog — or, not to be overly dramatic, a dead person.

This morning the area was surrounded by yellow tape. A police cruiser was blocking the street to traffic, and a Con Ed van was parked at the scene.

EVG correspondent Stacie Joy had actually taken some photos of the block, which is now closed off for Con Ed and other assorted emergency vehicles.

A resident says that Con Ed is here responding to a service outage. As for the possible source of the smell, one of the Con Ed workers said that their meter readers didn't pick up any natural gas. Yay!

Meanwhile, farther down the block at Avenue C... the FDNY was on the scene...

The FDNY, witnesses said, was there because of a manhole fire (it is manhole fire season!), which they believe led to the service outage up the block.

A manhole fire could cause a smell ... though residents have noticed the aroma going back to Sunday. No one could place the smell. Some suggested a very large dead rat. Some went with fermenting garbage. Another theory included "maybe someone hit a deer."

Other theories are also welcome, probably.

EV Grieve Etc.: Lost evidence in 1972 NYPD ambush; nest watch in Tompkins Square Park

[2nd Avenue bike lane snow removal photo by Derek Berg]

The fiancé of Nicole DuFresne, who was murdered during a mugging on Clinton Street, reflects on the tragedy 11 years later (Gothamist)

Nearly all of the evidence recovered from the deadly ambush of two NYPD officers on Avenue B and East 11th Street on Jan. 27, 1972, has disappeared (Daily News)

Nest watch in Tompkins Square Park (Gog in NYC)

The city is again looking to restore the Allen Street bathhouse (BoweryBoogie)

The sisters behind Mimi Cheng's on Second Avenue opening a location in Soho (Eater)

Bo Dietl is suing Cooper Union for $110,000 (New York Post)

Should LES galleries continue to stay open on Sundays? (Vulture)

NYU Langone makes it official with medical center for Essex Crossing (The Lo-Down)

NYC photos from 1965-69 by James Jowers (Mashable)

2016 real-estate trends to watch (Curbed)

Inside the billion-dollar sidewalk bridge biz (Crain's)

Revisiting Venus Records (Flaming Pablum)

When Lester Bangs trashed the Beatles on TV (Dangerous Minds)

The Ziegfeld closed for good last night (New York Post)

And you can see Bette Gordon's "Variety" from 1984 on Saturday night at 8:30 (Anthology Film Archives)

...and at midnight this weekend at the Sunshine Cinema on East Houston — John Carpenter's "The Thing" from 1982... (and "The Good, the Bad & the Ugly" plays at 11 p.m.)

...and it's Day 2 of a winter sale at Academy Records, 415 E. 12th St. between Avenue A and First Avenue...

Happening now!!

A photo posted by Academy Records NYC (@academyrecords) on

Come watch an artist make thousands of PB&J sandwiches on Avenue C

Brooklyn-based artist Jessica Olah is currently on a mission to make several thousand peanut butter and jelly sandwiches — for the sake of art, empathy for her mother and a good cause...

Olah estimated that from September 1990 through May 2004, her mother made 2,340 sandwiches for her to take to school.

Per DNAinfo:

"I was bringing someone their lunch [one day] and just marveling over the fact that my mom made me school lunches everyday," said Olah, 30. "I stopped and thought, 'Wow, my mom made me lunch every day, not only when I was younger but until high school.' That is a lot of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches."

Inspired to "exercise empathy" for her mother, Olah began the task of making the same number of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in five days...

Through Sunday, Olah, who raised $3,500 in a crowdfunding campaign, is making the sandwiches (roughly 10 a.m. to at least 6 p.m.) at the 12C Outdoor Gallery on Avenue C and East 12th Street. (195 Avenue C.)

People can come on by and watch this performance installation of sorts — titled "2,340 PB&J Sandwiches" — during the posted hours...

Each day, she is donating the sandwiches to The Bowery Mission.

As she told DNAinfo: "I wanted to do this as a meditation on what my mother has done. The peanut butter and jelly sandwich is a metaphor for a lot of small tasks mothers might do."

Thanks to Robert Galinsky for the photos

Hole watch 2016: Still no sign of a new building on Avenue C and East 6th Street

Well you know the lot on the northeast corner of Avenue C and Sixth Street has been empty for as long as anyone can remember. (Early 1980s by one estimate. The property apparently once housed a gas station.)

People have been trying to develop the lot, which includes a 10-by-12-foot hole, going back to 2003.

Most recently, a building permit was filed on Dec. 6, 2012, by 13 Willow Avenue Realty Co. LLC. Plans call for a six-story, 14-unit building.

We bring all this up now because, on Tuesday, the city once again disapproved the plans for the building. Just the latest rejection going back to February 2013...

Last July, property owner Israel Rosenbaum told The Villager that — despite appearances and reports of rat sightings through the years — the corner lot doesn't pose any health hazards. "There are no issues at this property other than the long process of getting DOB approval to construct a new building,” he told The Villager.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Addition by subtraction at East Sixth Street church

RIP Cowboy Jim

[Photo courtesy of John Caldwell]

Jim Hayes (aka Cowboy Jim) passed away on Jan. 2. He had been suffering from emphysema.

Unfortunately, we don't have a lot of biographical information at the moment.

Hayes had been a fixture off and on in the East Village since 1968. He could usually be found drinking coffee outside Porto Rico Importing Co. on St. Mark's Place and on a bench near the Hare Krishna tree in Tompkins Square Park.

There is now a makeshift memorial for him on the side of the shuttered Chase branch on Second Avenue and St. Mark's Place ... next to Porto Rico.

Thanks to EVG contributor Steven for the photos and information...

[Updated] Suffolk Arms finally reveals its exterior on East Houston

After more than a year, workers removed the plywood surrounding the long-vacant 269 E. Houston St. storefront at Suffolk ... where a new cocktail bar called Suffolk Arms has been in the works.

As The New York Times first reported in September 2014, Giuseppe Gonzalez, whose bartending credits include Golden Cadillac, PKNY and Dutch Kills, is behind the new venture. According to the Times, "Expect an English pub exterior but a New York feel inside."

In an update a few weeks back, BoweryBoogie heard that the opening is expected sometime next month. The bar has a website, though most of it appears to be TK at the moment.

Been years since there was a tenant here. The Local 269 never reopened after a flood KO'd much of the live music venue's equipment in the fall of 2012. The Local 269 space was previously home to Meow Mix and Vasmay Lounge. The Local opened in February 2009.

Updated 1/30

Here's a better plywood-free view...

Previously on EV Grieve:
Plywood wraps itself around the incoming Suffolk Arms

Thursday, January 28, 2016


From the EVG inbox...

I felt it was worth mentioning that the vacant Chase branch on Avenue A and 2nd Street is now home to a half of a roll, a half of a bagel and a dead pigeon. It's anybody's guess whether the three are related but I suspect fowl play. (It's probably inappropriate to pun in the face of death but that one kind of fell into my lap).

[Updated] Honoring a kale blazer on St. Mark's Place

[Photo from November by Steven]

The Love Wall is no more on the side of Foot Gear Plus on St. Mark's Place at First Avenue... and going up today!

Woo, kale! Probably an ad for Naked's Kale Blazer flavor...

Photos by EVG Kale Correspondent Steven...

Updated 1/30

Progress report via Lola Sáenz ...

Updated 2/1

And because you wanted to see the final product...

[Photo by EVG Kale Correspondent Steven]

6-story condoplex, complete with Danish handmade brick, coming to East 6th Street

[Via Google]

Way back in November 2013 we posted about the one-story structure at 619 E. Sixth St. between Avenue B and Avenue C hitting the market for $5.4 million.

The listing mentioned that air rights for the property were available.

Indeed, the new owner is taking advantage of that wasted air. There are now (as of December) approved permits on file with the city for a 6-story residential building here.

The work order shows a 9,235-square-foot building with five residences, likely condos. Amenities include bike storage and a two-car garage ... and the 2-floor duplex at the top includes a private rooftop terrace.

The LLC listed as the owner shares the address with Mermelstein Development. DXA Studio Architecture is listed as the architect of record.

And here are renderings via the DXA website... with more details on the building...

To the architect-ese:

This ground-up building faces an inner-block garden on 6th Street in the East Village. A desire for full expanses of glass to view the garden and the skyline beyond presented a challenge with the heat gain associated with direct southern exposure. The design includes flexible, folding wood slat screens within steel frames that provide solar shading when needed, but that allow unencumbered views when repositioned to the sides of the facade.

The facade is clad in a Danish handmade brick and includes a full width mural along a sidewall that links the building in character with its East Village neighbors where street art abounds. The five residential units, from a small studio up to a dramatic three bedroom with office and double height duplex on the top floors, incorporate a simple and timeless palette of materials throughout.

The space apparently had been home to a Japanese furniture designer. Public records show that the property went for $135,000 in 1993. The selling price last year was $4.7 million.