August 2012

Two Fires in the West Village Saturday

Two people sustained minor burns and seven of their neighbors suffered smoke inhalation as an early-morning fire broke out yesterday in a West Village apartment building, authorities said.

Flames could be seen in a fourth-floor unit on Commerce Street near Bedford Street just before 5 a.m. but were under control by 5:35, said an FDNY spokesman.

The nine residents were taken to New York Hospital for treatment of what were described as nonlife-threatening injuries.

“I left as soon as I smelled smoke. I just ran out,” said a woman who declined to give her name. “It’s very terrible, a lot of damage.”

A few hours later, another small fire broke out in the neighborhood, at 525 Hudson St. It, too, was quickly brought under control, but there was one minor injury reported.

Read more:

Building Interest

If you’ve been out walking around the neighborhood, you’ve probably seen Joe Forte hard at work on a drawing of whatever building he’s currently facing.

Although he winters in Key West, his love of the West Village is obvious in the time he spends in his detailed drawings and paintings of our building fronts.

His work documents the face of our ever-changing neighborhood, and many of his drawings show scenes that have already disappeared.

To learn more about him and his work, go to

Another Rape Reported in the West Village

The rape of a young woman reportedly took place in the early morning hours of Wednesday August 15 near Cornelia Street and Sixth Avenue.

According to the woman, the man was apparently following her and forced his way into her apartment where he attacked her, shortly before 3 am.

The suspect is described as 5’8″ Asian male, but no sketch is available at this time. Police ask that anyone with information call the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS or go to

Another early morning rape (and robbery) of a young woman in the West Village took place on Perry Street back in April, when a man identifying himself as a neighborhood watchman offered to help a young woman get home safely.

Both young women reported being raped while returning home after a night out drinking with friends.

Some safety tips for women:

  • Drinking and returning home alone can leave you vulnerable; try to have a friend walk with you and see you safely into your apartment, or if taking a taxi, ask the driver to watch you get safely into the front door.
  • Always be aware of people around you as you approach your front door; If you’re on your cell phone or listening to your iPad, you won’t be alert enough to protect yourself, and you leave yourself open to theft as well as assault. If you suspect someone is loitering nearby or possibly following you, keep walking and be ready to flag down a passing car or pedestrian if you sense trouble.
  • Never be afraid to be rude if someone is trying to come into your buillding behind you. The person may even be normal and respectable looking, but there’s no shame in refusing them entry.

 What, Me Worry? Part II

From August 14

On Monday evening, August 13, a protest rally against the Spectra Pipeline was held at
Gansevoort Street and the Hudson River.

According to neighborhood residents who attended the rally, most of the protesters were not local; many were “Occupy” protesters. Unfortunately, there was very short notice about the rally, and most concerned West Villagers were unaware that it was taking place. To get updates and learn about future rallies, go to the Sane Energy Project website.

Yes, you should be worried about the Spectra Pipeline about to put our neighborhood in danger. See “What, Me Worry” and if you want to add your voice to stopping the project, go here and sign the petition to The New York State House, The New York State Senate, and Governor Cuomo asking them to stop the hydrofracking.

Night Out Against Crime a Big Success

The annual National Night Out Against Crime Tuesday night at Father Demo Square was a big success, drawing crowds of people from throughout the neighborhood.

The purpose of the event was to distribute information on crime prevention and personal safety, let people know about local opportunities to fight crime in cooperation with NYPD, and to alert criminals that the neighborhood is organized, on the alert and ready to fight back.

Representatives from NYPD,  NYPD Auxiliary Police Force, Christopher Street Patrol and the 6th Precinct Community Council were on hand, as well as District Attorney Cy Vance, who addressed the the crowd.

Hot dogs and hamburgers were grilled up and served by police officers form the 6th Precinct club, accompanied by the wonderful piano and voice of Gabriel Aldort. You can visit his website by going here

If you were unable to attend, many of the brochures given out can be picked up at the 6th Precinct. You can also go online to learn more about the following:


West Village Oyster Bar

Posted on 

 Who knew?

Last month, while doing an underwater survey  for The River Project, head diver Chris Anderson discovered numerous large oysters in the Pier 42 piling field off Morton Street. According to Anderson, ”I knew there were a few live oysters there, but these are almost numerous enough to begin forming a reef.”

To see a video of the dive, go here

And to find out more about The River Project, go here