City Council Mulls Legislation to Clip Wings of Whirlybirds
Above: Passengers aboard a “doors-off” tourist flight banking over the Brooklyn Bridge. Below: The scene on the East River in March, 2018, where a “doors-off” flight crashed, killing all five people onboard.
A bill now before the City Council would ban non-essential helicopters from two City-operated heliports on the East River. If enacted, this bill would be a significant step toward a long-held goal for many Lower Manhattan residents and community leaders, who have decried for more than a decade the safety and quality-of-life concerns associated with incessant buzzing of the local skyline by tourist flights. These concerns have become more acute in recent years, with the onset of services like Blade Air Mobility and Uber Helicopter, which have made rotary-wing flights even more prevalent.
In a story first reported by AM New York, the Council is weighing a new bill that would “require any contracted entity operating, managing or otherwise responsible for a heliport on any property owned by the City of New York to prohibit any covered helicopter from taking off or landing at such heliport, except in an emergency.” In this proposed bill, a “covered helicopter” (or “non-essential flight”) is defined as any sortie other than those operated by the military, law enforcement, fire personnel, air ambulances, and news organizations. (Emergency landings would still be permitted for all helicopters.)
This bill would not apply to the West 30th Street heliport, which falls within the Hudson River Park, and is therefore subject to State (rather than City) jurisdiction. In a separate (but related) development, however, the State legislature recently enacted its own “Stop the Chop” bill, which bans the same categories of helicopter flights from the West 30th Street heliport, while also making it easier for any member of the public to sue operators of such flights for alleged harm from the noise they create. This bill is now awaiting the approval of Governor Kathy Hochul, although she has not announced whether she intends to sign it into law.
Neither City nor State legislation, however, is able to regulate the dozens of tourist flights over Manhattan that originate from New Jersey. To limit that source of sorties, federal lawmakers, such as Congressman Jerry Nadler, have proposed a series of laws in recent years that would bar tourist flights over national parks, or over densely populated urban areas. (Both formulations would have the effect of severely curtailing flights in and around New York.) But none of these proposed federal laws have inspired sufficient support among other members of Congress to advance to a full vote.
In the meantime, helicopter noise complaints to 311 have soared, by 700 percent in three years, according to City data.
A Long Row to Hoe
CB1 Pushes Vision to Beautify Downtown Thoroughfare Closed for Decades
Community Board 1 (CB1) is endorsing a plan to transform the streetscape of Park Row, which stretches for more than half a mile between the Vesey Street (near City Hall) and Chatham Square (in Chinatown), and which has been closed for most of its length (owing to security concerns) since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.
Lower Manhattan City Council Rep Seeks Conversion of Local Jail to Women’s Facility, In Lieu of Demolition and Reconstruction
City Council member Christopher Marte is proposing to convert the existing Manhattan Detention Center, located in Chinatown (on White Street, between Baxter and Centre Streets), into a jail for women, rather than demolishing the facility and erecting a much-larger jail in its place, as the Mayor Eric Adams controversially plans to do.
City Council member Christopher Marte hosted a Battery Park City Resiliency Town Hall meeting on Wednesday, June 15, at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. This meeting focused on plans by the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) to complete the South Battery Park City Resiliency Project. That project will require BPCA to close Wagner Park, starting after Labor Day, for at least two years, in order to construct resiliency measures that are intended to make the space resistant to rising sea levels and storm surges associated with climate change that will be more severe than Hurricane Sandy.
Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn… that’s their order outward from the sun, and it’s the order you’ll see June’s planetary lineup, stretched across our morning sky (Earth is situated between Venus and Mars). See all five planets with the unaided eye until Mercury slips away in the morning twilight in early July.
Observe and sketch the human figure. Each week a model will strike short and long poses for participants to draw. An artist/educator will offer constructive suggestions and critique. Drawing materials provided. Free.
Beth Gill’s Nail Biter is a darkly beautiful dreamscape in which the theatrical tools of character and story are reimagined through a psychodramatic lens, transforming contemporary dance performance into a vital space of ritual. Nail Biter reaches towards science fiction and ancient myth to reveal stories of connection and loss with a sense of magic and awe. Free.
Works curated by Melinda Wang. See films by artists. Receive your “poetic passport” by Julia Justo when you arrive. View Graciela Cassel’s multimedia exhibition River Dreams. try the interactive rowing machine belowdecks! Rain or shine. Cash bar serving beer and wine, 21+ only. Masks are required.
National Museum of the American Indian, One Bowling Green
Join the curators of the New York museum’s newest exhibition, Dakota Modern: The Art of Oscar Howe, as they discuss one of the twentieth century’s most innovative Native American painters. Howe (1915–1983) committed his artistic career to the preservation, relevance, and ongoing expression of his Yanktonai Dakota culture.
This tour explores Battery Park City’s southern district, which is home to the Skyscraper Museum and includes some of BPC’s earliest landscapes and infrastructure, including the residential enclaves built in the 1990s that followed the 1979 Cooper Eckstut Master Plan. We will visit historic Pier A, Wagner Park, and South Cove, as well as the green spaces that connect to the Esplanade, the first waterfront park in New York since the Brooklyn Heights Esplanade in 1951. We will also learn about the developing Resilience Action Plan of the BPC Authority. Free.
National Museum of the American Indian, Diker Pavilion
Part of the 9th Americas Film Festival New York. Two radically opposed women divide the community into two fractions over the issue of alcohol in the community and come face-to-face with each other to determine the best path forward. A conversation with director, Caroline Monnet, follows the film. Free.
Enjoy this nostalgic celebration of the summer solstice. Join in lively dance around the Midsummer pole. Make wreaths from beautiful flowers representing those in bloom on the solstice in Sweden. Enjoy a parade, children’s games, and Swedish delicacies. Free.
Available for PT/FT. Wonderful person, who is a great worker.
Worked in BPC.
$2.00 per notarized signature.
Lower Manhattan Greenmarkets
Greenwich Street & Chambers Street
Wednesdays and Saturdays, 8am-3pm (compost program: Saturdays, 8am-1pm)
Bowling Green Greenmarket
Broadway & Whitehall St
Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8am-5pm (compost program: 8am-11am)
World Trade Center Oculus Greenmarket
The Outdoor Fulton Stall Market
91 South Street, between Fulton & John Streets
Indoor market: Monday through Saturday,11:30am-5pm
CSA pick-up: Thursday, 4pm-6pm; Friday, 11:30-5pm
Outdoor market: Saturday 11:30am-5pm, May through Thanksgiving
Today in History: June 22
On this day in 1611, explorer Henry Hudson was overcome by mutineers who insisted on sailing his ship Discovery away from the icy waters of what would become known as Hudson Bay, in Canada. Almost two years earlier, in an expedition in the ship Half Moon, Hudson had sailed into what would become New York Bay and up the river that would be named after him. But on June 22, 1611, with his teenage son and six crew members, he was cast out of Discovery and set adrift in a small boat. The group chased after Discovery, but soon was left behind. Hudson and the others were never seen again. Painting of the scene by John Collier.
1377 – 10-year-old Richard of Bordeaux succeeds his grandfather Edward III as Richard II, king of England
1535 – Cardinal John Fisher is beheaded on Tower Hill, London, for refusing to acknowledge Henry VIII as head of the Church of England
1611 – English explorer Henry Hudson, his son and seven others set adrift in Hudson Bay by mutineers on his ship Discovery and never seen again
1633 – The Vatican forces Galileo Galilei to recant his view that the Sun, not the Earth, is the center of the Universe. (The Vatican admits it was wrong on Oct. 31, 1992.)
1783 – A poisonous cloud caused by the eruption of the Laki volcano in Iceland reaches Le Havre in France.
1807 – The British warship HMS Leopard attacks and boards the American frigate USS Chesapeake.
1870 – US Congress creates the United States Department of Justice
1907 – The London Underground’s Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway opens.
1942 – Pledge of Allegiance formally adopted by Congress
1969 – The Cuyahoga River catches fire in Cleveland, Ohio, drawing attention to water pollution, and motivating the Clean Water Act and the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency.
1990 – Checkpoint Charlie is dismantled in Berlin.
2011 – After hiding for 16 years, Boston gangster Whitey Bulger is arrested in Santa Monica, California
1903 – John Dillinger, American bank robber (d. 1934)
1906 – Anne Morrow Lindbergh, American pilot and author (d. 2001)
1921 – Joseph Papp, American director and producer (d. 1991)
1922 – Bill Blass, American fashion designer (d. 2002)
1949 – Meryl Streep, American actress
1965 – David O. Selznick, American screenwriter and producer (b. 1902)
1969 – Judy Garland, American actress and singer (b. 1922)
1987 – Fred Astaire, American actor, singer, and dancer (b. 1899)
1993 – Pat Nixon, 44th First Lady of the United States (b. 1912)
2004 – Mattie Stepanek, American poet (b. 1990)
2008 – George Carlin, American comedian, actor, and author (b. 1937)