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DOWNTOWN
POST NYC 
 
News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
 
 
Volume 1, No. 72  May 30, 2014
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IN THIS ISSUE

Quote of the day:
"She was thinking about the community to the very, very end." - Maria Smith, describing the last days of her friend and Battery Park City neighbor, Percy Corcoran, who died on May 28.

* Hudson Eats opens at Brookfield Place
* New executive director for Asphalt Green
* In memorium: Percy Corcoran
* Bits & Bytes: New security contractor for WTC; NYT critic pans memorial design; Rent help
* Letter to the editor: The forgotten South Street Seaport
* Calendar

For breaking news, go to www.DowntownPostNYC.com

Sprinkles cupcakes at Hudson Eats. May 29, 2014. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)


 

Battery Park City
HUDSON EATS OPENS AT BROOKFIELD PLACE
 
Barbecue from Mighty Quinns. (Photos: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

On the evening of May 29, a ravenous and thirsty crowd ascended the escalator from the Winter Garden at Brookfield Place to the second floor of the southern wing of the building formerly known as 2 World Financial Center, eager for the debut of Hudson Eats.

The luxe, 30,000-square-foot food court can accommodate 600 people. It has been furnished with white, marble countertops, walnut dining chairs and bar stools and custom-made lighting.

Diners can opt for the privacy of a booth or a communal experience at one of the long, shared tables. Through the large windows, they can look down on Battery Park City's North Cove Marina and the Hudson River.

At the press opening, each of the 13 (soon to be 14) eateries was handing out samples representative of their menus, and there was not one dud in the lot. People of varying dietary persuasions will find something to like here. The vegetarians can go to Chop't or Dig In for a salad, the carnivores, to Mighty Quinns for barbecue or to Umami Burger - which also showed that it isn't just a one-note Johnny by putting out samples of its beet salad with truffled ricotta, smoked almonds, wild baby arugula and truffle dressing.

The sandwiches from the Cambodian-inspired Num Pang Sandwich Shop, served on crisp baguettes, are outstanding.

Sprinkles, with its artful array of moist, freshly baked cupcakes topped with buttery frosting, has a stand right next to the escalator. Anyone with a taste for desserts will find it difficult to walk by and not succumb. Directly across from Sprinkles is Olive's, which prides itself on its coffee - a perfect combo with those cupcakes.

The prices aren't steep for the quality, but anyone on a tight budget would probably think twice about eating at Hudson Eats very often. Burgers at Umami Burger, for instance, range in price from $11 to $15. With a side order of onion rings or smushed potatoes ($4.50) and something to drink, the bill could easily be similar to one from a waiter-served, sit-down meal.

Some of the Hudson Eats restaurants will be open on Saturday, May 31 for a "soft" opening. The whole place will open officially on Tuesday, June 3. The hours are Monday to Friday, 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more information, click here.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer
 
Hudson Eats can accommodate 600 people.  




The Paris Cafe | 119 South Street | 212.240.9797 | thepariscafenyc.com | @theparisnyc

Battery Park City
NEW EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FOR ASPHALT GREEN
 
Carol Tweedy and Maggy Siegel. (Photo: Asphalt Green)

Asphalt Green's executive director, Carol Tweedy, spoke at Community Board 1's full board meeting on May 27 in one of her last official appearances as the leader of the health and fitness organization. Effective July 1, Maggy Siegel is replacing Carol Tweedy, who is retiring after 20 years.

Siegel has shepherded both emerging businesses and international brands, including Dylan's Candy Bar, Chanel USA, Coach and Tiffany & Co. In the non-profit sector, she was board member and most recently, acting CEO of CancerCare, a national organization that provides free professional support services to anyone affected by cancer.

Asphalt Green is currently in the midst of a $2.25 million "Fit Kids Fit City" fundraising campaign to support free programs in school playgrounds, gymnasiums and pools across New York City. In 2013, Asphalt Green programs reached more than 30,000 children on its uptown campus, and another 30,000 directly in local community facilities. Asphalt Green's services are delivered to under-served populations, from youth to seniors, in all five boroughs of New York City.

Carol Tweedy addressing Community Board 1.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
Tweedy's presentation to the community board raised some hackles when she described the free "Waterproofing" program offered at Asphalt Green Battery Park City. Tweedy said it's a partnership with New York City public schools to teach children how to swim. "Of the five schools that we are serving, four of them are coming from Brooklyn," she said. "There are more than 300 students involved in that free program."

Community Board member Paul Hovitz wanted to know why the Lower Manhattan schools, within walking distance of Asphalt Green, couldn't use the pool.

"We use an index of poverty and free lunch for schools that we serve because it's totally for free and we don't see that in the local schools," Tweedy replied.

"We do have that," said Hovitz.

"
If the school isn't eligible but the child is, we are more than happy to offer scholarships," said Tweedy.

If there are to be any changes in the program, that will now be up to Siegel to discuss.

Tweedy said that Asphalt Green Battery Park City turns one year old in June and that it now has 2.600 members. All of the programs are thriving, she said, with the exception of the culinary arts program. Tweedy said that Asphalt Green is looking at changing the culinary arts offerings and prices to make them more attractive.

Asphalt Green's day camp starts at the end of June. "We've very pleased that the issue of field use seems to have been settled cooperatively," Tweedy said.

The fields will be shared.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer




In memorium
PERCY CORCORAN
Percy Corcoran campaigned passionately for a branch library in Battery Park City. She was there at 10 a.m. on March 13, 2010 when the library opened.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Percy Corcoran, who had lived in Battery Park City since the early 1990s, passed away of breast cancer on May 28 at Memorial Sloan Kettering hospital. She was 59 years old.

Everyone in Battery Park City is in her debt. The Battery Park City branch library would not exist without her efforts. At the end of 1998, she started a letter-writing campaign to get funding for the library. When the library finally opened at 10 a.m. on March 13, 2010, she was waiting outside and took out the first book.

She was also the force behind Battery Park City's Greenmarket, which was held on Brookfield Place's Liberty Street plaza. It closed when Brookfield began construction on what was then called 2 World Financial Center.

Though Corcoran never had any pets herself, her neighbor, Maria Smith, remembered her friend's love of dogs. "We bonded over petting neighborhood dogs," Smith said. "She also had a passion for plants. She had a real green thumb. Any orphan plant that she would find in the compactor room, she would take in and revive."  

 

Smith said that she always knew where to find Corcoran on Sundays. She would be sitting on the Battery Park City esplanade, reading The New York Times from cover to cover. "That was her Sunday ritual," Smith recalled.  

  

Corcoran worked as a financial investigator in the office of New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. Even after she became ill, she continued to work. "She worked to the very end," said Smith. "They would come and pick her up and she'd go into work and then they'd take her home."   

     

In the last weeks of her life, "Percy was really tying up a lot of loose ends," according to Smith. "She had no family or relatives that I know of. She wanted to donate the bulk of her estate to the Battery Park City library, so she was dealing with attorneys." 

 

Corcoran donated all of her books to the library and her furniture to Housing Works.

 

"She was thinking about the community to the very, very end," said Smith. "It's quite remarkable. It's breathtaking, in a sense."  

   

Smith said that she last saw Percy on Tuesday evening. Percy died a few hours later. "I think she was sort of aware that we were there," Smith said, "but she was pretty heavily sedated."  

 

Smith would like to create a permanent memorial to Corcoran at the library. Anyone who wants to work with her on that project, can email her at mtvsmith@yahoo.com.
 

 - Terese Loeb Kreuzer 

 

 


Bits & Bytes
NEW SECURITY CONTRACTOR AT WTC; 9/11 GIFT SHOP 86'S CHEESY CHEESE PLATE; NYT CRITIC PANS MEMORIAL DESIGN; RENT HELP
One of the access gates to the World Trade Center construction site.
 (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

"Port Authority Names New Security Contractor For WTC Site After Security Breaches,"
CBS New York, 5/29/14. "After a series of high-profile security breaches, a shakeup in security has been announced at the World Trade Center site," says CBS New York. "The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced Wednesday that it has contracted with Allied Barton Security to provide unarmed guards at the One World Trade Center building." In the past months, skydivers jumped off the building and a young man squeezed through a hole in a construction fence and climbed to the top of the building, undetected. For the complete article, click here.

"9/11 Museum Removes 9/11 Cheese Plate From Gift Shop," Gothamist, 5/29/14. "The tacky decorative cheese plate in the shape of the U.S., with hearts where the 9/11 attacks occurred, is no longer for sale at the National 9/11 Museum's gift shop," says Gothamist. "After the backlash about whether some items were crass-like a 'Darkness Hoodie' and rescue vests for dogs-museum officials insisted the items were necessary for revenue. But now they are doing an about-face." Joe Daniels, president of the National Sept. 11 Memorial Museum was quoted as saying that, "Once the public starts coming in, you learn so much." For the complete article, click here.

"Finding Space for the Living at a Memorial," New York Times, 5/28/14. Michael Kimmelman, the architecture critic for The New York Times, doesn't much like the architecture of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum. "This is a place for remembrance, but it's not like Arlington National Cemetery, Gettysburg or even the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, a postage stamp by comparison, which honors nearly 60,000 dead and missing veterans. The site of the Sept. 11 memorial is not singularly devoted to those who died. It also serves as the forecourt for an office development and as public space for Lower Manhattan. The neighborhood was a casualty, too, along with the rest of New York. In the tortuous planning process, victims' families and real estate interests needed to be reconciled with the interests of everyone else in the city, including those who live and work downtown. So far, I'm not sure it's working. The place doesn't feel like New York. It feels like a swath of the National Mall plunked in downtown Manhattan: formal, gigantic, impersonal, flat, built to awe, something for tourists." For the complete article, click here.

"Cape Advisors Acquires Tribeca Building for $35M,"
Commercial Observer, 5/29/14. Commercial Observer reports that, "Real estate development and investment firm Cape Advisors has acquired 149-151 Church Street in Tribeca for $35 million, according to property records filed with the city. The mixed-use property, also known as 102 Chambers Street, features 26,150 square feet of residential space and 6,650 square feet of commercial space, according to PropertyShark. A two-bedroom apartment in the building was last listed in September 2013, asking $4,695 per month." For the complete article, click here.

Some seniors get additional rent increase protection: Seniors age 62 or older who live in rent-regulated apartments and pay more than one-third of their income for rent are eligible for rent increase protection under a law known as the Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption Program (SCRIE). Previously, seniors could have no more than $29,000 a year in income to be eligible. With a law signed by Mayor Bill de Blasio on May 29, that income level was raised to $50,000 a year. The bill was sponsored by City Council Member Margaret Chin, who represents Lower Manhattan (City Council District 1) and Council Members Julissa Ferreras and Jumaane Williams. Chin said, "I have heard from many seniors who have been denied SCRIE for being only a few dollars over the income limit. On July 1, they will finally be able to apply for that coverage. Increasing SCRIE eligibility will mean that tens of thousands more New Yorkers will be able to afford to age independently and in place." For more information about the program, click here.

 

Letter to the editor
THE FORGOTTEN SOUTH STREET SEAPORT
Water Street in the South Street Seaport with a hand-carved sign for the Maritime Crafts Center, a part of the South Street Seaport Museum. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

To the editor:

I received a lovely post card introducing the Hudson Eats eating services at Brookfield Place. It says, "During the next year you'll see Brookfield Place becoming the shopping and dining destination you've been longing for!"

 

The restaurants all look very nice and I'm sure will be very popular with tourists and the 1%.

 

I am part of the 99% who struggle to make ends meet to live and survive in this neighborhood. I've lived here for over 40 years and remember when Brookfield's property was just a thought.....an idea..... a dream on landfill!

 

However, the reason I write is because I am extremely upset at the omission in Brookfield's area map of the South Street Seaport!

 

The South Street Seaport has been part of Lower Manhattan since before, I'm sure, any of us were born, with a rich history matched by few landmarks still standing. For Brookfield not to include it on its map in this elaborate display of its brand I find insensitive and disappointing.

 

Brookfield lists SoHo the East Village, Chinatown, TriBeCa, FiDi, Wall Street and Battery Park! No South Street Seaport......why???? There may be a few other places they could have included as well but this is a glaring omission especially since it was severely damaged by Sandy and has such a rich, historical significance to Lower Manhattan.

 

I understand the neighborhood is "gentrifying," but Brookfield, please reconsider your future graphics when expressing your desire for your facilities to become my shopping and dining destination.

 

Frances M. Curtis

 

From the editor:
Downtown Post NYC welcomes letters to the editor. Email them to editor@downtownpostnyc.com. We reserve the right to edit letters for clarity and length.

CALENDAR: Week of May 26
Surrounded by skyscrapers, Habitat for Artists has set up four, multicolored rooms made of recycled materials on Brookfield Place plaza, and has filled them with art.
 (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
May 31: Habitat for Artists, a Hudson Valley-based artists' collective, and Bash The Trash, a group that makes instruments from reused materials, return to Brookfield Place's waterfront plaza with an art installation and workshops in printmaking, papermaking, collage, knitting and music for kids and adults. Also June 1. Time: Noon to 5 p.m. Free.

May 31:
Art historian Dorothea Basile leads a tour of Battery Park City's Teardrop Park whose stone structures are sculptures and whose plantings reflect the native vegetation of the Hudson River Valley. Place: Teardrop Park (Enter on North End Avenue or River Terrace between Murray and Warren Streets and meet at the rock wall). Time: 2 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

May 31
: On Governors Island, Rite of Summer presents Dawn of Midi, Colonels Row. Dawn of Midi, an electronica influenced all acoustic trio, will perform original music under the shade of Colonels Row. It is the first Rite of Summer concert on the Island this season. Time: 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. For more information, click here. Vintage Baseball, Parade Ground. Visit the Parade Ground and enjoy America's pastime the way it used to be played! Time: 11 a.m. For more information, click here.

May 31: "From the Horse's Mouth" brings an all-male cast of dancers to Pace University's Schimmel Center for Tina Croll and Jamie Cunningham's theater/dance event. This edition honors the late Frederic Franklin during his centenary year. An international cast of renowned dance artists share their personal stories and reflections alongside original choreography. Also, June 1. Place: Michael Schimmel Center for the Arts, 3 Spruce St. Time: 7:30 p.m. Tickets: $26.50-$41.50. For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

May 31: The New Amsterdam Market opens for the season with more than 60 local and regional vendors on South Street between Beekman Street and Peck Slip. They will be selling fish and seafood, produce and fruit, meat, beverages, bread, pasta and grains, honey, syrups, candy, pies, and more. For a complete list, click here. Time: 11 a.m.-5 p.m.

June 1: The Museum of Jewish Heritage presents "Genesis: Truman, American Jews, and the Origins of the Arab/Israeli Conflict," with author John B. Judis in conversation with David G. Marwell, Museum Director.  Judis, a senior editor at "The New Republic," reassesses Truman's position on the creation of the State of Israel. The author argues that the country that came into being in 1948 was not the one the president had hoped for, and that Truman's experience was a disturbing portent for the future. Place: 36 Battery Place. Time: 4 p.m. Tickets: $20; $15 (members). For tickets, click here.

June 1: The Community Center at Stuyvesant High School will hold an Open House from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. with swimming, badminton, basketball and free demo classes in yoga and tai chi. For swimming, bring a towel. Swim caps are available for purchase. For more information, call (646) 210-4292 or click here.

Ongoing: "A Town Known as Auschwitz" is an exhibit of photographs at the Museum of Jewish Heritage tracing the history of a town called "Oswiecim" in what is now Poland, where Jews and non-Jews lived side by side for centuries. When German forces occupied the town in September 1939, they renamed it "Auschwitz" and established a concentration and death camp there. More than 1 million people died at Auschwitz, including 90 percent of the town's Jews. The museum is at 36 Battery Place. For information the exhibit, click here. For information on the museum's hours and admission fees, click here.
 
Last call: An exhibit called "Bright! Color in Three Dimensions" is in the lobby of 250 Vesey St., Brookfield Place. With the advent of digital and commercial technology, it has become easier to take the power of color for granted in two-dimensional mediums. The artists - Justin Adian, Caitlin Bermingham, Benjamin Dowell, Charles Dunn, Juan Fernando Morales, and Courtney Puckett - in Bright! take color to another level by manipulating it into sculptural forms. Whether made of plastic, textile, or paper, the artists use color as a foundation for the entire object, rather than the decorative finish to the piece. Time: 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.Through June 1. Free. 

Ongoing: Poets House in Battery Park City presents "A Painter and His Poets," the first major retrospective show of George Schneeman's collaborative paintings, collages, prints, and books, with portraits of his poet friends, spanning 40 years. "A sort of utopia in the visual field filled with pleasure, quickness and wit" is how Schneeman himself described his collaborative work with poets. Exhibition on view through Saturday, Sept. 20, during regular Poets House hours. Place: 10 River Terrace. Free. For information about Poets House, click here.

Ongoing: The South Street Seaport Museum's lightship Ambrose and its barque Peking welcome visitors Wednesdays to Sundays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Pier 16 (on the East River at Fulton Street). The Ambrose, launched in 1908,  once guided large ships through the Ambrose Channel into New York harbor. Peking was launched in Hamburg, Germany in 1911, one of the last commercial sailing ships ever built. She was used to carry goods from Europe to South America and to return to Europe with nitrate. The museum's Visitors Services associates explain all of the fascinating details of the ships and their relevance to the history of New York as a port city. Cost: $12 (adults); $8 (students, 12-24 and seniors); $5 (children 2-11); under 2, free. To buy tickets, click here.

Ongoing: "Defining Lines: Maps from the 1700s and early 1800s" at the Fraunces Tavern
Museum. Twenty-seven maps provide a perspective on the evolving nation's place in history. A map from 1804, never before exhibited, shows the U.S. postal routes. Place: 54 Pearl St. Time: Noon to 5 p.m., daily. Admission fees: $7; $4 (seniors, students with ID, children, 6 to 8 years old. Children, 5 and under, free. Active military with ID, free. For more information, click here.
  
Ongoing: The National Museum of the American Indian is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with free admission. It offers free films, docent-led tours of its exhibitions and tours of its premises, the Alexander Hamilton U.S. Custom House, designed by Cass Gilbert. The building, which was completed in 1907, is a National Historic Landmark and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. One Bowling Green. Phone: (212) 514-3700. For the museum's calendar, click here.



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Editor: Terese Loeb Kreuzer

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2014