Lower Manhattan’s Local News
How to Counteract a Cataract
BPCA to Host Meeting Tonight on Wagner Park Flood Measures
Tonight (Monday, June 24) the Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) will host the fourth in an ongoing series of public meetings that will determine the shape of resiliency measures to be constructed soon on the community’s southern flank, near Wagner Park and Pier A.
This session will take place at Six River Terrace (opposite the Irish Hunger Memorial and next to Le Pain Quotidien), starting at 6:00 pm. (Admission is free, and all interested members of the public are encouraged to attend.)
The primary focus of this evening’s session will be to present a conceptual design for a series of overlapping flood barriers that will begin near the Museum of Jewish Heritage, wrap around Wagner Park, and then extend eastward (along the perimeter of the Battery) to Bowling Green.
The centerpiece of this system will be a structure on the site of the current Wagner Park pavilion, a building that houses Gigino’s restaurant, and is much prized by area residents because its design elegantly frames a view of New York harbor and the State of Liberty.
Among the design parameters that emerged at the March 12 meeting about Wagner Park resiliency was the strong likelihood that this building will have to be demolished.
Based on community concerns, the BPCA and its design team (headed by engineering firm AECOM) examined multiple options for preserving the structure — among them reconstructing it atop a new berm that would act as a bulwark against incoming water.
But each scenario yielded minimal protection against the storm surges and rising sea levels associate with climate change, while also incurring the maximum expense. Even in the variation that would replicate the building on the crest of a newly construct ridge, the treasures view of the Statue of Liberty from street level would be blocked by the higher ground needed to stave off flooding.
As AECOM engineer Heather Morgan noted at the March 12 meeting, “no matter what you have to do to hit that design flood elevation,” a metric required by federal regulators, ” your view in relationship to the rest of the site will be altered and changed or blocked.”
BPCA and AECOM planners also considered responding to community concerns about initial plans for a larger pavilion by creating a hill to act as a flood barrier, without a rebuilt pavilion structure.
Because the Wagner Park resiliency project aims to counter a 100-year storm, the design criteria calls for protection that extend between 14 and 18 feet above current elevations in the park.
The current (and still provisional) design outline envisions a menu of counter-flooding measures stretching between the Museum of Jewish Heritage and Bowling Green. The Museum itself, in this scenario, would be reinforced with dry flood-proofing measures, while a concealed flood wall would be built from the Museum through Wagner Park to Pier A Plaza. From that point, a mixture of deployable flood barriers and berms integrated into the landscape would extend to Broadway and State Street.
This scheme is still being refined, and one goal of tonight’s session will be to present an updated version of the plan, which incorporates public feedback from previous meetings. Input from residents at tonight’s discussion will also be incorporated into another meeting, scheduled to take place before the end of this year, at which a finalized design will be unveiled.
Once the design process is complete, construction work is tentatively scheduled to begin in 2020, with the aim of having the project completed sometime in 2022.
At the March 12 meeting, BPCA chairman George Tsunis said, “this is incredibly important work. The Authority thinks that it’s the single most important thing we will be doing over the next couple of years and we want to do it right. We want to make sure that the resiliency work that we do is lasting. I think the most important component is a lot of input from the community in which we serve. I think sometimes a lot of boards like ours forget that and I’m grateful to have Board members who never let us forget that it is about a community input and cooperation and reaching out and just having respect for everyone’s opinion. So I promise you we will always be available, we will be open to dialogue, our doors are always open.”
EYES TO THE SKY
June 24 -July 7, 2019
Country nightlife, fleeting Mercury, celestial triangle
Upon opening the door and stepping over the threshold into the darkness at solstice time, this stargazer, visiting in the countryside, is bathed in wild sounds of trilling toads and tree frogs. A universe of musical sound coming from a nearby pond fills the airwaves around me. Simultaneously, star-like flashes, brilliant pulses emitted by insects – fireflies, lightning bugs – are blinking on and off above the ground and up to the treetops. Waves of light and incandescent streamers float on the air and vanish. I am in the midst of communities of animals communicating with each other, loudly. All humans live at the edges of wildlife habitat that is inside and beside human neighborhoods.
Stargazing begins about 4 hours later at summer solstice time than around the winter solstice! Sunset, now the latest of the year, 8:31pm in our locale, is followed by a long, lingering twilight. Nightfall is not until about 10:35. In between, an hour to an hour and a quarter after sundown, the brightest stars and planets are visible.
First, search for Mercury in the west. See the illustration. It is a challenge to spot Mercury and a triumph when we do. Look with binoculars. Mercury dims and sets earlier everyday. Look today!
Locate bright orange star, Arcturus, close to zenith in the southwest. To Arcturus’ left, spot bright Vega. Drop your gaze between the two, where, shining 22 degrees above the south-southeast horizon, brightest of all, is planet Jupiter. Note the large equilateral triangle shaped by Vega, Arcturus and Jupiter.
Opportunity to Participate
July 26 – August 4, Summer Star Party, overnight camping in Plainfield, Massachusetts
Very Merry Skerry Ferry
Governors Island Passengers Are Going in Style with Launch of New Vessel
Visitors to Governors Islandembarking from Lower Manhattan now have a new way to get to the beloved greensward that has become Downtown’s equivalent of Central Park.
The new vessel, Governors 1, a 132-foot-long, 40-foot-wide ferry was built over the last two years at a cost of $9.2 million in the Warren, Rhode Island shipyard of Blount Boats, from a design by Seattle-based Elliott Bay Design Group.
Not Ferry Nice
Concerns about Crowding and Noise Surround City Hall Plan for New Staten Island Route to Battery Park City
The administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio is planning to launch in 2020 a new ferry service from Staten Island that will bring to the Battery Park City ferry terminal more than 60 new vessels each day, carrying as many as 2,500 passengers.
In a June 5 presentation to the Battery Park City Committee of Community Board 1 (CB1), Megan Quirk, an assistant vice president for the City’s Economic Development Corporation (EDC), said, “the service will run from 6:30 am to 10:00 pm, seven days a week, and will cost the same as a subway ride. It will start in Staten Island, come to Battery Park City, and then continue to the western side Midtown.”
Composting Takes Root
in Battery Park City
In a 2017 study of residential waste by the NYC Department of Sanitation, 21% of garbage was food scraps. Not only does food waste take up unnecessary space in landfill, it releases gas, which is detrimental to the environment.
Thanks to the Battery Park City Authority, Battery Park City has always been at the forefront of green living, guided by BPCA’s pioneering green building guidelines and organic park maintenance. For the last couple years, there have been two community compost bins – one at BPC Parks headquarters on Battery Place and one on Chambers Street.
Scant Information about Radical Changes Contemplated for the Battery
City Hall is keeping mum about plans resiliency plans for the Battery, the historic park at the southern tip of Manhattan, according to a recent discussion at Community Board 1(CB1).
At a May 28 meeting, Alice Blank, who chairs that panel’s Environmental Protection Committee, recapped a recent presentation by the City’s Economic Development Corporation(EDC) by saying, “the only interesting thing about these slides was how few there were of them.”
“It was a surprisingly lean presentation,” she added. To read more…
Let’s celebrate our graduates during the month of June.
Send us a picture and 100 words about your graduate or your own achievement. Pre-K through Ph.D
CLASSIFIEDS & PERSONALS
Swaps & Trades Respectable Employment
Lost and Found 212-912-1106
$99 Hypnosis Session
($247 value) Smoking Cessation, Weight Loss, Motivation, Sports Performance, Confidence, Stress, Insomnia…
Call Janine Today. Limited time offer! 917-830-6127
Experienced Elder Care (12 years)
Able to prepare nutritious meals and light housekeeping
Excellent references 347 898 5804 Hope
NOTARY PUBLIC IN BPC
$2 per notarized signature
Text Paula at 917-836-8802
Dishes, windows, floors, laundry, bathrooms.
You name it – I will clean it.
Call Elle at 929-600-4520
IT AND SECURITY SUPPORT
Experienced IT technician. Expertise in 1-on-1 tutoring for all ages.Computer upgrading & troubleshooting.
Knowledgeable in all software programs. James Kierstead email@example.com 347-933-1362. Refs available
Experienced with BPC residents. Available nights, days, and weekends. Will cook, clean and administer medicine on time. Speaks French and English. Can start immediately. Please call or text 929-600-4520.
OLD WATCHES SOUGHT
Mechanical pocket and wristwatches sought and
If you would like to place a listing, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
36 Ebony, 52 Ivory, 28 Liberty
Sing for Hope Makes Music for the Eyes, Colors for the Ears
On June 3, the much-lauded public art project, Sing for Hope Pianos, returned to the streets as 50 artist-designed pianos were arrayed on Fosun Plaza, outside 28 Liberty Street.
Monday June 24, 2019
Senior Group Exercise
Battery Park City Parks
Strengthen the body through instructor-led rhythmic movement and aerobics, balance and coordination exercises, as well as strength training. Join this fun and vigorous session for a great workout! 6 River Terrace.
The Listening School
Lower Manhattan Cultural Council
Social Choreographer Ernesto Pujol brings his multi-year Listening School project to the festival in the form of a public performative research process and a silent durational performance: The Listeners. The project was created in response to the urgent need to listen empathically in order to support democracy in America and abroad. Pujol’s Listening School will seek performative engagement for three days across Lower Manhattan’s urban riverbeds of listening flow. Dressed in Indigo Blues, thirteen artists will pursue the public’s roadside discourse on listening. Their open process will culminate in The Listeners, a performance as a formal listening vessel embodying stillness in the midst of flow. 10 Maiden Lane and the plaza at 88 Pine Street
Mend It Monday
Join Remade in Brooklyn and learn to mend, darn, patch and LOVE your clothes! Bring a project and our team of experts will help you get started or unstuck to bring your garment back to (a better!) life. Examples: resewing hems, patching holes, fixing snags, de-pilling, as well as creative reuse techniques like visible mending, refashioning, and more. 205 Front Street
Bionomics Begins at Home
BPCA Seeks Green Bond Designation for Upcoming Debt Issue and Plans for Carbon-Neutral Future
The Battery Park City Authority(BPCA) is beginning to formulate a roadmap for shrinking the community’s environmental impact. At the May 21 meeting of the agency’s board of directors, Authority president Benjamin Jones explained that, “we’re now making a concerted effort, which we talked a little bit about at our last meeting, to further advance sustainable practices, both in our operations and throughout the neighborhood.”
He noted, “we are committing to having a formal sustainability plan,” which will be announced on the next Earth Day (in April, 2020), “which will provide a road map to get us closer to a carbon-neutral Battery Park City.”
Today in History
Monday June 24
451 – 10th recorded perihelion passage of Halley’s Comet
843 – Vikings destroy Nantes
1441 – Eton College founded by Henry VI
1497 – John Cabot claims eastern Canada for England, believed he found Asia in Nova Scotia)
1664 – The colony of New Jersey is founded.
1794 – Bowdoin College is founded in Maine
1813 – Battle of Beaver Dam – British and Indian forces defeat US forces
1853 – Gadsden Purchase 29,670-square-mile (76,800 square km) from Mexico (now southern Arizona and New Mexico) for $10 million signed by President Franklin Pierce
1863 – Planning an invasion of Pennsylvania, Lee’s army crosses Potomac
1901 – First exhibition by Pablo Picasso, 19, opens in Paris
1916 – Mary Pickford becomes the first female film star to get a million dollar contract.
1931 – USSR and Afghanistan sign neutrality treaty
1932 – Coup ends absolute monarchy in Thailand
1939 – Pan Am’s first US to England flight
1947 – Flying saucers sighted over Mount Rainier by pilot Ken Arnold
1951 – Persian army takes over nationalized oil installations
1961 – Iraq demands dominion over Kuwait
1964 – FTC rules health warnings must appear on all cigarette packages
1975 – Eastern 727 crashes at JFK airport killing 113
1976 – 1975 movie “Rocky Horror Picture Show” released in Germany
1982 – Supreme Court rules president can’t be sued for actions in office
1992 – John Gotti begins life sentence in jail
1993 – Arab terrorist group planning bombing of Holland and Lincoln Tunnels caught
1993 – Yale computer science professor Dr. David Gelernter loses the sight in one eye, the hearing in one ear, and part of his right hand after receiving a
mailbomb from the Unabomber.
2004 – Capital punishment is declared unconstitutional in New York
2012 – Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood becomes President of Egypt
1771 – E I Du Pont, France, chemist/scientist (Du Pont)
1797 – John Hughes, archbishop, founded Fordham University in the Bronx
1895 – Jack Dempsey, “Manassa Mauler”, heavyweight boxing champion (1919-26)
1911 – Juan Manuel Fangio, racing driver
1935 – Pete Hamill, Brooklyn, NY, journalist (NY Post)
1944 – Jeff Beck, Surrey England, singer/guitarist (Jeff Beck Group)
1945 – George E Pataki, Peekskill NY, (Gov-R-NY, 1995- )
1908 – Grover Cleveland, 22nd & 24th US President (1885-89, 93-97), dies at 71
1987 – Jackie Gleason, comedian (Honeymooners), dies at 71
1991 – Rufino Tamayo, Mexican painter, dies at 91
Edited from various internet sources
Cruise Ships in the Harbor
Arrivals and Departures
Thursday, June 27
Inbound 7:30 am (Bayonne); 4:00 pm; New England/Canadian Maritimes
Friday, June 28
Adventure of the Seas
Inbound 6:30 am (Bayonne); outbound 3:00 pm; Bermuda/Bahamas
Saturday, June 29
Anthem of the Seas
Inbound 6:30 am (Bayonne); outbound 4:00 pm; Bermuda
Inbound 7:15 am; outbound 3:30 pm; Port Canaveral, FL/Bahamas
Sunday, June 30
Inbound 6:15 am; outbound 4:30 pm; Bermuda
Queen Mary 2
Inbound 6:00 am (Brooklyn); outbound 5:00 pm; Halifax, NS/Boston, MA/Newport, RI
Many ships pass Lower Manhattan on their way to and from the Midtown Passenger Ship Terminal. Others may be seen on their way to or from piers in Brooklyn and Bayonne. Stated times, when appropriate, are for passing the Colgate clock in Jersey City, New Jersey, and are based on sighting histories, published schedules and intuition. They are also subject to tides, fog, winds, freak waves, hurricanes and the whims of upper management.
CB1 Wants to Contravene Convene
Local Leaders Raise Concerns about Traffic and Crowding from Planned Events Venue at Brookfield
The owners of Brookfield Place, are planning to launch an events venue that will host up to 1,000 people at a time, which has sparked concerns about traffic and crowding from community leaders.
At the June 5 meeting of the Battery Park City Committee of Community Board 1 (CB1), Mark Kostic, Brookfield’s Vice President for Asset Management, explained that Convene, a firm that develops and markets meeting rooms, event venues and flexible workspaces (and is partially owned by Brookfield) will be taking over the 86,000-square-foot space formerly occupied by Saks Fifth Avenue, at 225 Liberty Street.
Subvertising Campaign Shocks the Conscience, But Not for Long
On Wednesday morning, two dozen cages fashioned from chain-link fencing appeared on sidewalks at strategic locations around Manhattan and Brooklyn. A pair of these were placed in Lower Manhattan: one on Centre Street, opposite the Municipal Building and close by the Brooklyn Bridge; the other about two blocks away, near the intersection of Broadway and Vesey Streets.
Each one contained a lifelike mannequin, the size of a small child, wrapped in a foil blanket, which bore a disturbing resemblance to a shroud. From around the edges of these blankets, locks of hair and smalls pair of shoes were visible. Concealed within every cage was also a rudimentary audio system that repeatedly played a track of a small child sobbing. This was interspersed with the sound of a heartbeat.
A Cenotaph for the Esplanade
Cuomo Announces List of Possible Locations in Battery Park City for Hurricane Maria Memorial
At Sunday’s Puerto Rican Day Parade, Governor Andrew Cuomoannounced that his administration is pushing ahead with plans for a memorial to Hurricane Maria — the cataclysmic storm that claimed more than 3,000 lives in Puerto Rico in September, 2017 — which will be located in Battery Park City.
Mr. Cuomo’s office also announced Sunday that his administration has narrowed the potential sites for such a memorial within Battery Park City down to six possibilities.
‘A Thumb in the Eye’
Local Leaders Don’t Want One Broadway to Get Any Bigger
Community Board 1 (CB1) is resisting plans to add two floors to a landmarked building in the Financial District. In a resolution laced with unusually harsh language, enacted at its May 28 meeting, the Board called upon the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC) — which can veto alterations to legally protected historic structures — to reject a proposal by the building’s owner, Midtown Equities, to build a glass pavilion on top of One Broadway (also known as the International Mercantile Marine Company Building), located at the corner of Broadway and Battery Place, directly adjacent to Bowling Green.
The resolution summarizes the developer’s proposal with the words, “to distill the very convoluted design’s description, and despite all the narrative hoopla, it is really a preposterous glass box with a mansard surround.”
Anthem of the Seas Spins About
Local Elected Officials Say ‘Avast’ to Water-Borne Ads, But Company Claims City Is Out of Its Depth
The advertising barges that have become a pet bête noire for Lower Manhattan residents were the focus of a discussion at the April 23 meeting of Community Board 1 , where Paul Goldstein, who chairs that panel’s Waterfront, Parks, & Cultural Committee, offered an update, saying, “those floating billboards that you’ve seen on both the east and west sides — the good news is that the City is cracking down on them. Both the Mayor and the Council say they find it unacceptable. So they are imposing fines and enacting laws to restrict it.” To read more…
Cass Gilbert and the Evolution of the New York Skyscraper
by John Simko
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