October 2012

Hudson River Park Woes
From October 16
For some time now, the news about Hudson River Park Trust’s financial woes has been worrying local residents and park lovers.

HRPT has been depending in large part on income from parking at Pier 40 at Houston Street, but recent reports are that Pier 40 is in really bad shape and will need $120 million to make necessary repairs. If the repairs are not made, we may lose Pier 40.

There has been much controversy about how to find the money for repairs and how to finance the upkeep of the beautiful park going into the future. Proposals for commercial and residential space at Pier 40 have been put forward and met with resistance from parts of the community who feel that either plan could ruin the public space.

According to DNAinfo.com, a plan has been put forward by HRPT to make a Business Improvement District and to collect taxes from nearby property owners who, they say, have had their property values increase substantially because of the nearby park. The proposed tax could affect properties as far east as Hudson Street. For more information on HRPT’s plan, go here

There will be three public meetings on the issues scheduled in November and December:

  • Thursday November 15 at 6:30 pm: Village Community School, 272 West 10th Street
  • Tuesday November 27 at 6:30 pm: Fulton Center Auditorium, 119 Ninth Avenue
  • Monday, December 3 at 6:30 pm: Borough of Manhattan Community College,199 Chambers Street in the Richard Harris Terrace.

Enjoying the Last Hours Before Sandy
From October 28 

The rain and winds had not yet appeared by Sunday afternoon, and many were taking advantage of the last hours before they’d have to take shelter from the ravages of storm Sandy.

Parents and children seemed unconcerned as they attended outdoor Halloween parties at the High Line, Bleecker Playground and Pier 46 at Charles Street.


Animals are Blessed
From October 7 

In honor of The Feast of St. Francis, there were  Blessing of the Animals services at St. John’s Lutheran Church and St. Luke in the Fields. The photographs below were taken at the warm and touching (and sometimes amusing) service at St. Luke in the Fields.


Are You Ready for Frankenstorm?

From October 25
Spooks and Goblins may not be the only scary things in store for Halloween week.

In case you haven’t been listening to the weather forecast, we may be getting what is being called a perfect storm, as a high pressure system and an approaching cold front may meet the remains of Hurricane Sandy right over New York City. As of today, it’s forecasted to hit early next week.

According to Reuters News Agency, experts say this storm could be a multi-billion dollar disaster for the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states. And far worse than 2011’s Hurricane Irene.

Many of these alarming forecasts come to nothing, but it’s a good time to get prepared for the worst. Although Manhattan isn’t likely to lose power, flooding, dangerous winds and subway service interruptions are possible in extreme weather conditions. Evacuation 
zones, in case of serious flooding, include many areas west of Hudson Street, and you can see the hurricane evacuation map by going here

FEMA and the New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) have issued alerts regarding this storm, and provide guides and tips for preparedness.

You can download OEM’s Hurricane Guide by going here

Okay, so we probably won’t have the storm they’re telling us about, but you should always be aware of steps to prepare for emergencies.

So stay safe, and pay attention to the forecasts over the nest couple of days.

Best Halloween Display
From October 11

As always,  the Jackson Square Pharmacy window at 12th Street and Eighth Avenue is decorated for a big holiday, and right now it’s done up in a big way with creepy and spooky stuff.

Their great creative displays are always well done, and worth walking by to take a look at. We look forward to their next holiday display!

Death of a Diner
From October 5

Diner. Greek Coffee Shop. Whatever you call it, it’s a place you can stop by 24 hours a day, and have eggs over easy at midnight or a BLT down at dawn.

There are still a few left in the Village, but some memorable ones have disappeared, including the Sheridan Square Coffee Shop, which had been at Seventh Avenue and Grove since at least the 1960s, and is now a Starbuck’s.

Most recently, we lost University Restaurant on University Place, and a neighbor mourns its loss:

In Memoriam: The University Restaurant. I remember eating here with my father right after I moved into my new apartment around the corner.  That was almost 40 years ago.  And this place had been around for a while before that.  There were 2 other similar dinners on University Place, now long gone. They all served good stuff at reasonable prices. Nothing spectacular, but they all knew how to cook eggs over easy and never burned the toast.  They were also opened late, usually served their breakfast menu as long as they were opened and you could always get a real hamburger cooked to order, even at midnight.  And if you came in twice in the same week, you became a regular.  Not a bad deal. —Maury Englander

Silence from the Bell Tower

From October 4

The bell tower at St. Luke in the Fields on Hudson Street is a cherished Village landmark, and is in serious need of repair. Desperately needed emergency repairs will come to $146,000 The total cost of restoration will be $450,000, and will be receiving only 30% of that from the diocese, so the church is reaching out for tax-deductible contributions to make the tower safe.

St. Luke’s music program and LGBT outreach programs are just a small part of what the church does for the community, and the church tower is a powerful symbol of the church’s contributions..

To Learn more about it, go here