The Broadsheet – Lower Manhattan’s Local Newspaper
Lower Manhattan Is Fourth-Fastest Growing Community in NYC
Alliance Report Parses Census Data to Show Downtown’s Population Swelled by Five Figures in Ten Years
An analysis by the Downtown Alliance of preliminary results from the 2020 Census indicates that Lower Manhattan boomed in the decade between 2010 and 2020, with the local population rising by 33 percent to 60,803 residents.
This makes the combined catchment of Battery Park City and the Financial District the fourth-fastest growing community anywhere in the five boroughs of New York City, trailing only Long Island City/Hunters Point in Queens (which grew by 198 percent), Downtown Brooklyn/Dumbo-Boerum Hill (67 percent), and the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn (41 percent).
Two census tracts in the Financial District (east of Broadway and north of Liberty Street) grew by 44 percent, adding a combined 5,700 people. At the same time, Battery Park City’s headcount jumped by 22 percent, adding slightly more than 2,800 residents.
During the same period, according to the Alliance, Lower Manhattan overall added 5,300 new households. This comes in addition to 14,100 new dwellings created between 2000 and 2010.
The local jump in population (which amounts to 15,064 new residents in the past ten years) appears to have been partially—and temporarily—offset by a pandemic-triggered population decline of more than 6,982 residents, as documented in a separate report, “The Pandemic’s Impact on NYC Migration Patterns,” released by the office of the City Comptroller in November.
That exodus appears to have been driven by the convergence of multiple demographic indicators. Underscoring the relative affluence of Lower Manhattan’s residential districts, the report noted, “the ability to leave the City quickly depended on both the means to travel and secure a secondary living space, as well as being untethered from a job that required in-person work.”
The Comptroller’s analysis continued, “residents in the wealthiest 10 percent of neighborhoods, corresponding to median incomes above $110,000, were 4.6 times more likely to leave than other residents… During spring 2020, residents of the wealthiest neighborhoods were 7.2 times more likely to exit.”
But more recent data about leasing and sales activity for rental apartments and condominiums appear to indicate that the tide is now turning, with renewed, strong demand for dwellings Downtown.
As the Alliance report notes, “the pace of growth continued in 2021 as the neighborhood added over 500 new units, with nearly 4,000 more currently under construction or planned for development.”
Given that the current tally for new and planned dwellings nearly equals the number of households created during the previous decade, this may augur that Lower Manhattan’s residential population is poised to jump by approximately 15,000 more new people between now and 2030.
‘He Drove Me Away Like A Dog’
Black History Month: Lower Manhattan Taken for a Ride on Monument It Actually Needs
While the saga of Rosa Parks and the 1956 Montgomery bus boycott has become a canonical American parable, New York played out its own version of the same drama, more than a century earlier. In July, 1854, Lower Manhattan resident Elizabeth Jennings Graham was on her way to church, and boarded a horse-drawn street car at Chatham and Pearl Streets.
Like much else in mid-19th century New York, street car service was segregated, with most coaches reserved for white riders, but some bearing signs that read, “Negro Persons Allowed in This Car.”
The White Rose was founded in 1942 by several students at the University of Munich, including Sophie Scholl and her brother Hans. The members were united against Nazi policies and began writing and distributing leaflets calling on the German people to take action to stop injustice and genocide. In 1943, Hans and Sophie Scholl were arrested by the Gestapo after they distributed leaflets to students at their university. Hans Scholl, Sophie Scholl, and Christoph Probst, another member of the group, were executed on February 22, 1943. Since then, the White Rose, and Sophie Scholl specifically, have become a symbol of resistance during WWII. Join the Museum online for a program examining Sophie Scholl and the White Rose. The program will feature a conversation between Wolfgang Huber, the son of White Rose member Kurt Huber and Professor Emeritus at the Catholic University of Eichstätt-Ingolstad; Frank McDonough, author of Sophie Scholl: The Real Story of the Woman Who Defied Hitler; and Nathan Stoltzfus, the Dorothy and Jonathan Rintels Professor of Holocaust Studies at Florida State University. The conversation will be moderated by Lori Weintrob, Professor of History at Wagner College and founding director of the Wagner College Holocaust Center. The program will be accompanied by a virtual screening of the Academy Award nominated film Sophie Scholl: The Final Days. Attendees will receive a private link to stream the film one week before the program. Free; suggested $10 donation
Join China Institute online as Tao Jiang, a scholar of Chinese philosophy, maps the life of China’s greatest sage and challenges conventional wisdom about Confucius as the ultimate architect of hierarchies and obedience. In a new book, Origins of Moral-Political Philosophy in Early China: Contestation of Humaneness, Justice, and Personal Freedom (Oxford University Press 2021), Jiang portrays Confucius, whose thinking has laid the foundations of Chinese moral-political culture for thousands of years, as a man of his times and beyond, creative, daring, and even subversive in his fight for a more humane and just world. And what does that say about Confucian values today? Free.
In celebration of Black History Month, an intimate singer-songwriter showcase featuring up and coming NYC artists from the African American community. This evening offers an opportunity for the artists to share their voices, personal stories and love of music. Free. 6 River Terrace.
In her book Built Up, Patrice Derrington uncovers the roots of the global real estate industry in early modern London and seminal projects of private urban development such as Covent Garden. Derrington synthesizes economic history and the latest planning and finance literature in a work that codifies the principles and activities of real estate development as a foundation for future academic research and practical innovation. Free on Zoom.
Chinese investment in the Caribbean has soared in the past decade. State-owned enterprises, private firms and individuals have been investing in special economic zones, natural resources, ports and passports. The Caribbean’s offshore financial markets have also played a significant role in enabling US investors to invest in Chinese firms and for Chinese firms to gain access to U.S. capital markets. In this online event, two Caribbean experts share insights into China’s growing influence and what it means for the people of the Caribbean—and the United States. $10.
China’s Qing court produced the largest group of surviving paintings of Chinese empresses, many of which were once used for ancestor worship in the private imperial collection. Join us as Daisy Yiyou Wang, who co-curated the 2019 Empresses exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum, explores an extraordinary portrait of Empress Xiaoxian, whose early death broke the heart of the Qianlong emperor. Wang will examine details of the portrait, discuss its remarkable conservation journey, and even share new discoveries about where it used to hang. Wang, who is Deputy Director of the Hong Kong Palace Museum, will also discuss how her institution will look at artifacts from Beijing’s Forbidden City through a modern lens when it opens later this year. Free; online.
Visit the exhibitions and the ships of the South Street Seaport Museum for free. At 12 Fulton Street, see South Street and the Rise of New York and Millions: Migrants and Millionaires aboard the Great Liners, 1900-1914, and at Pier 16, explore the tall ship Wavertree and lightship Ambrose.
2022 marks the 530th anniversary of the arrival of Christopher Columbus in the Americas. Sponsored and dispatched by the Spanish monarchs Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile, Columbus led a fleet of three ships on August 3, 1492 to sail west to search for a direct sea route to reach Asia as an alternative to the overland trade routes. On October 12 of that year, the ships made landfall—not in Asia, as Columbus assumed, but on San Salvador in the Bahamas. Subsequently he made three more voyages to the New World in 1493, 1498 and 1502, reaching the Caribbeans, and Central and South Americas. Although Columbus always maintained that he had reached the Far East, he never set foot in Asia. Columbus’s interest in traveling to the East was sparked by the famed Travels of Marco Polo, an account of the author’s travels to China in the 13th century that held Columbus spellbound in his childhood. Columbus treasured the book so much that he brought along a copy on his first cross-Atlantic journey. Travels of Marco Polo fascinated not only Columbus, not also a host of other famous European navigators in the Age of Exploration, including Amerigo Vespucci, from whose name the term “America” is derived, Ferdinand Magellan, who led the first recorded circumnavigation of the earth in 1519, Vasco da Gama, the first European to reach India by way of Cape of Good Hope, and the 15th century cosmographer Paolo dal Pozzo Toscanelli, who was the first to create a map showing a westward sea route to China and subsequently passed it to Columbus to carry on his first voyage. Marco Polo’s travelogue generated in the West an immense interest in and yearning for Asia in general and China in particular. To learn about Marco Polo’s travels to China and the impact he made, the Renwen Society presents a lecture on February 26 by Prof. Jia Hongyan, an expert on tourism who will discuss Marco Polo’s storied journey to the East, what he saw and experienced in China, and how the legendary book was brought back to China. Online in Chinese. Free.
Join the Museum and Our Travel Circle for a virtual walking tour of Kazimierz, the historic Jewish quarter in Krakow, Poland. Kazimierz was originally an independent city set up outside of Krakow by the King of Poland. As the neighborhood grew, its Jewish residents thrived and established synagogues and businesses. In the 1930s, before the onset of the Holocaust, a quarter of Krakow’s population was Jewish. Our tour guide, Anna, will show us the Tempel Synagogue, the oldest in Krakow; the Krakow Jewish Community Center, which is a hub of the city’s resurgent Jewish community today; and interesting Jewish sites including Helena Rubinstein’s family home. $36.
EYES TO THE SKY
February 22 – March 7, 2022
Leading the Sun at dawn: eye-popping Venus, our solar system’s hottest planet
Image taken in May 2016 by Akatsuki, a Japanese robotic research spacecraft orbiting Venus. Venus was captured in infrared light showing a surprising amount of atmospheric structure on its night side. The vertical orange terminator stripe between night and day is so wide because light is so diffused by Venus’ thick atmosphere. APOD Picture of the Day June 7, 2016. Image Credit and Copyright: ISAS/JAXA
Planet Venus, an orb of white fire gleaming in darkness, rises above the southeastern horizon in early dawn. Venus is the third brightest object in Earth’s sky, next to the Sun and moon. Similar in size to Earth and our closest planetary neighbor, its brilliance is not to be attributed to its proximity. As described by scientists at EarthSky.org, “Venus is bright … because it’s blanketed by highly reflective clouds. The clouds in the atmosphere of Venus contain droplets of sulfuric acid, as well as acidic crystals suspended in a mixture of gases. Light bounces easily off the smooth surfaces of these spheres and crystals. Sunlight bouncing from these clouds is a big part of the reason that Venus is so bright.”
The magnificent 2016 Akatsuki image, above, captured what is described in NASA literature as a world perpetually shrouded in thick clouds that “whip around the planet at about 200 miles per hour (100 meters per second).” The planet “has a thick, toxic atmosphere filled with carbon dioxide … (and the) yellowish clouds of sulfuric acid trap heat, causing a runaway greenhouse effect. Venus is the hottest planet in our solar system, even though Mercury is closer to the Sun. Surface temperatures on Venus are about 900 degrees Fahrenheit https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/planets/venus/overview/
NASA continues, “Smothered in thick clouds, Venus’ surface is usually shrouded from sight. But in two recent flybys of the planet, the Parker Solar Probe used its Wide-Field Imager, or WISPR, to image the entire nightside in wavelengths of the visible spectrum – the type of light that the human eye can see – and extending into the near-infrared.” Click here for more
“NASA’s Parker Solar Probe WHISPR has taken its first visible light images of the surface of Venus from space.” NASA release February 9, 2022. On left: WISPR image from Parker Solar Probe’s fourth flyby of Venus aligns with, on right, topographical maps from NASA’s Magellan mission. The Magellan mission mapped the surface of Venus with radar in the 1990s. The images gave the first global view of what is below Venus’ thick clouds. Credit: NASA/APL/NRL (left), Magellan Team/JPL/USGS (right)
The WISPER images reveal a faint glow from the surface that shows distinctive features like continental regions, plains, and plateaus. A luminescent halo of oxygen in the atmosphere can also be seen surrounding the planet.
To observe Venus before dawn and until half an hour before sunrise, look to the southeast. Sunrise is at 6:40am on February 23; 6:21am March 7. Seek out a location with a view to the southeast by 5am to observe Venus, Mars and Saturn in the coming days.
Planets Venus and Mars in the dawn sky during the timeframe of this post. Mercury, not shown, is located to the left, east, of Mars, close above the skyline. On the 27th, Mercury is below and to the left of the crescent moon. Binoculars improve visibility of Mars and Mercury in civil twilight. Diagram courtesy StarDate.org. published with permission
The moon and Venus may be visible until about 6:15am. Venus -4.61 magnitude on February 23, decreasing to -4.51m on March 7. Mars -1.30m, Mercury 0.00m. If you plan to adventure out before dawn to see Venus rise, know that she’s up earlier everyday: February 23 at 4:20am. Where views are obstructed, expect Venus later by half an hour or more.
Alliance Real Estate Analysis Tracks Indicators for Rentals, Condos, and Retail
The Downtown Alliance has published its annual report, “Lower Manhattan Real Estate Year in Review,” which contains multiple, significant data points about the state of the community.
According to the Alliance’s analysis, Lower Manhattan currently hosts 33,650 households in 342 residential buildings.
For those wishing to lease an apartment, the news is as daunting as it is encouraging for landlords: Median rents reached an all-time high in the second half of 2021, topping out at $4,200, which surpasses a high last seen in 2019, when median rents hovered around $4,000. It also marks a rapid and steep recovery from the bottom of the rental market, during the first quarter of 2021, when local median rents were $3,000. To read more…
Paws to Reflect
Local Leaders Push City Hall to Consider the Cat’s Meow
Community Board 1 (CB1) is urging the City’s Economic Development Corporation (EDC) to protect a colony of feral cats that have come together in the South Street Seaport, at the site of the recently demolished New Market Building.
Feral cats, estimated to number as many as half a million in the five boroughs of New York City, face few threats during spring, summer and fall. Ample trash and New York’s prodigious rodent population provide plentiful sources of food. But in winter, they need shelter to take refuge from the cold, and water supplies often freeze. To read more…
To the editor:
Thank you for your article about the community cats at the seaport.
A lot has happened since the December CB1 meeting. Following the resolution, the EDC swiftly installed four winter shelters on the site. We are now committed to identifying a safe relocation option for the spring and have since launched a fundraising effort to support this: https://gofund.me/31d86024.
It is important to note that these are feral, and unadoptable strays. They were initially trapped and returned last spring, thus preventing many more unwanted litters from being born.
While we’ve had support and guidance from organizations, we are a community group of volunteers who are individually contributing our time and personal resources to feed and care for the cats daily regardless of the weather conditions. While we do not need assistance in feeding the cats, it can cost $1000 or more per cat to relocate them so we do need help with the fundraising for relocation.
We appreciate the interest in our effort and the incredible community support we’ve had thus far.
Kristin Eileen Bradfield
To the editor:
Thank you printing the article and Esther Regelson’s response. Esther should be credited for trying to make downtown a better place to live. Thank you Esther.
Lights, Cameras, Violation
CB1 Pushes for Expansion in Use of Monitoring Devices
Community Board 1 (CB1) is pushing for the expanded use of traffic enforcement cameras, the automated monitoring devices that can detect violations of the speed limit and other rules (such as stopping at red lights) on public roads.
The use of such equipment began in New York nearly a decade ago, when then-Governor Andrew Cuomo allowed New York City to launch a pilot program to deter speeding in 20 school zones. The success of that initial deployment in 2013 has expanded to 950 cameras in 750 school zones, where the devices logged more than four million violations in 2020, an increase of almost 100 percent from 2019.
Data from the City’s Department of Transportation document the difference that speed cameras make, with a 71.5 percent reduction in speeding and a 16.9 percent drop in injuries at times when and in locations where they are in use. To read more…
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78 year old refined intellectual gentleman having a passion for cruises and travel seeking a male or female caregiver/companion in exchange for all expense paid venture on the ocean. Only requirement is relationship comfort between us and ability to help with physical care regarding the limitations and restrictions of COPD.
Analysis By Housing Group Cites Declining Affordability in Lower Manhattan
A leading housing advocacy organization has completed an exhaustive look at threats to affordability in every community in the five boroughs, and has found that Lower Manhattan ranks among the ten most at-risk neighborhoods by one key metric, while also placing in the 20 most-endangered by another.
CB1 Pushes for Periodic Closure of FiDi Street, to Allow Safe Access to Scho
“We have 800 kids going into that building,” said Tricia Joyce, the chair of the Youth and Education Committee of Community Board 1 (CB1) said at the panel’s December 21 meeting, referring to the Broadway Educational Campus at 26 Broadway, which houses four separate public schools.
Ms. Joyce was explaining why New Street, the location of the primary entrance used by all four schools (on the back side of the building) needed to be closed periodically during school days.
“It’s not feasible to have traffic coming and going and those security barriers that stop vehicles popping up in the street at the same time,” Ms. Joyce said.
She added that New Street is already closed to most traffic, as part of the security perimeter established around the New York Stock Exchange after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, but dozens of construction vehicles and delivery trucks still traverse the narrow alley each day. To read more…
Lower Manhattan Greenmarkets
Greenwich Street & Chambers Street
Every Wednesday & Saturday, 8am-3pm
Food Scrap Collection: Saturdays, 8am-1pm
Open Saturdays and Wednesdays year round
Bowling Green Greenmarket
Green Greenmarket at Bowling Green
Broadway & Whitehall St
Open Tuesday and Thursdays, year-round
Market Hours: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Compost Program: 8 a.m. – 11 a.m.
The Bowling Green Greenmarket brings fresh offerings from local farms to Lower Manhattan’s historic Bowling Green plaza. Twice a week year-round stop by to load up on the season’s freshest fruit, crisp vegetables, beautiful plants, and freshly baked loaves of bread, quiches, and pot pies.