Like us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter 
To advertise in Downtown Post NYC, email 

News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
Volume 1, No. 114  Sept. 5, 2014
Quote of the day:
"I would like to see those two buildings - the New Market and the Tin Building - be markets of some kind." - Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer on her preferences for South Street Seaport development.
* Three members of New Amsterdam Market board of directors resign
* Catching up with Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer: Part 1 
* Bits & Bytes: WTC broker becomes WTC tenant; Bill Clinton visits Harbor School
* Downtown Bulletin Board: 9/11 commemorations; Citizen preparedness; Fire Safety Forum
* Community Board 1 meetings: Week of Sept. 8
* Calendar

For breaking news, go to

Sunflowers blooming in the Battery Park City community garden. Sept. 2, 2014
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 

A New Amsterdam Market fundraising event on Aug. 21, 2011 was attended by thousands of people. A vendor posted a sign saying he was sold out.
 (Photos: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Three of the six members of the New Amsterdam Market board of directors resigned on Sept. 5. Two of them - Roland Lewis, the chairman of the board, and Madeline Rogers - said that they had resigned because Robert LaValva, founder of the New Amsterdam Market, has decided to focus his efforts on improving food systems and has abandoned his fight to create a market district in the historic South Street Seaport.

The third member of the board who resigned, author Paul Greenberg, could not be reached for comment.

"I signed on with the thought that the market was a site-specific venture to try to create a better waterfront at the South Street Seaport district," said Lewis. Without that context, he said, his reasons for joining the board "became a little academic." However, he added that he was still hopeful that "a great market can be created in the Seaport."


Rogers said in an email that her reasons for resigning were similar to Lewis'. "I remain convinced that the Fulton Fish Market site, including the Tin Building and New Market buildings, are integral to the historic district and should be saved," she said. "I also believe that the best and highest use for those iconic structures would be a public market like those that have been such great assets in other cities, such as London, San Francisco and Seattle. The Seaport was my main interest in joining the board and that continues to be the place where I plan to invest my energies."


LaValva is away at the moment and could not be reached for comment other than a brief statement in an email. "I knew this was going to happen," he said. "My priority is to refocus the market on its founding mission pertaining to food systems, and to see if it can find the funding and support it needs to be a viable organization."  


Rogers praised LaValva as "a  genius and visionary who inspired and delighted thousands" with his idea for a public market in the Seaport. She said that she wished him well. "I, however, will continue to work toward a future for the South Street Seaport that includes uses consistent with its history and special character, including a robust public market."


That's also what Lewis wants. 


"I'm willing to talk to anybody including the City of New York and others about how we might get there," he said. He added that a market won't happen without investment "and that's something that the City of New York will have to come to terms with."


He said that The Howard Hughes Corporation, the Dallas-based developer with long-term leases on parts of the Seaport, had "reached out over the last couple of months" about the possibility of collaborating on establishing a market.  


"If it's a market of integrity and if they're willing to build on success, I think they could do good and do well," Lewis said.


The New Market Building and the Brooklyn Bridge. 

However, he also said that he views the New Market and the Tin Buildings, both parts of the old Fulton Fish Market, as "irreplaceable resources" that would be "the natural home of a vibrant market."


The last time that The Howard Hughes Corporation made any public comment on the matter, it said that it would like to demolish the New Market Building and erect a 50-story luxury hotel/apartment tower on that site. If that's still what Howard Hughes has in mind, it's not clear how a collaboration between HHC and the New Amsterdam Market's former board members could work out.


- Terese Loeb Kreuzer 



Manhattan Borough President Brewer speaking on Sept. 2 at the opening of the Greenmarket and plaza at Greenwich and Albany Streets. (Photos: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Gale Brewer, previously a member of City Council, was sworn in as Manhattan Borough President just nine months ago, but she has been a whirlwind since then, working with former City Council colleagues to introduce legislation, speaking out on issues as varied as the "rich door/poor door" controversy, pedestrian safety, landmarks preservation, farmers' market siting, nutrition for the elderly, and more - much more.

She frequently shows up at Community Board meetings and other public functions. She speaks at press conferences on matters affecting the borough and the City at large. She has a Facebook page and a Twitter feed where she posts regularly. She is always thinking of new ways to use technology - and somehow in the midst of all this, she found the time a couple of weeks ago to go to Israel for a day and a half to see for herself what was going on there.

On Thursday, we talked with her in her office for almost half an hour about her Israel trip, about the South Street Seaport, (she was one of the driving forces behind the Seaport Working Group that met from February to May to create development guidelines for the Seaport) and about other issues that are currently on her desk.

In the next few issues of Downtown Post NYC, we will tell you what she had to say, starting with her remarks about the South Street Seaport. - Terese Loeb Kreuzer

Brewer on the South Street Seaport:

Brewer (left) shopping at the New Amsterdam Market.
Brewer: We haven't gotten anything new from the last time. We had our meetings, we developed our guidelines and principles. We're waiting to hear [from The Howard Hughes Corporation]. I want that tower moved. I've made that clear, but to be honest with you, we haven't gotten anything new yet.

Downtown Post: Do you think you can move the outcome in any way?

Brewer: I think we will. I'm hoping. I'm very optimistic.

Downtown Post: It's not just the tower. It's a lot of things.

Brewer: Yes. We spent a lot of time - it's the tower, it's the museum, it's the open space, it's landmarking. There are so many issues. But the tower is important.

Downtown Post: Do you have anything that you wish to say about the New Amsterdam Market?

Brewer: I know that Robert [LaValva] resigned. I can tell you [the New Amsterdam Market] had the best - oh, my God! - I bought two chicken potpies. They were the best. I still dream about them. About the market - They had a good concept. I would like to see those two buildings - the New Market and the Tin Building, be markets of some kind. Both of them.

Downtown Post: Howard Hughes has their eyes on them.

Brewer: Well, they can have their eyes on them. It's not over yet.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer

(Postscript: The chicken pot pies to which Brewer was referring came from Pie Corps. They are as good as she said.)

Bits & Bytes
The Wavertree, built in 1885, will go to shipyard for repairs, but not until winter.
 (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

"1 WTC's broker signs on as a tenant," Crain's New York Business, 9/4/14. "The firm in charge of leasing up America's tallest building is taking some space there for itself," says Crain's New York Business. "Cushman & Wakefield is moving its downtown office to 1 World Trade Center, the 1,776-foot office spire set to open at the end of the year. The real estate services company is taking 10,222 square feet, a portion of the 104-story, 3 million-square-foot building's 45th floor, for 10 years. The asking rent for the space is $69 per square foot. Cushman is the leasing agent for the property, along with the building's co-owner, the Durst Organization." For the complete article, click here.

Wavertree update: The South Street Seaport Museum's iron-hulled sailing ship, Wavertree, was supposed to go into a shipyard this summer for repairs, but she is still moored to Pier 15 in the Seaport as usual.

"It's looking like it will be this winter," said Jonathan Boulware, interim president of the South Street Seaport Museum. "As is usual with a complicated process like this, there have been some delays."

Wavertree was built in Liverpool in 1885, initially to carry jute between India and Scotland. However, after less than two years in that line of work, she began transporting cargo wherever it was wanted. In 1910, the ship was dismasted off of Cape Horn and ignominiously converted into a storage warehouse and later, into a sand barge in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The South Street Seaport acquired her in 1968 and restored her. Wavertree was designated a national landmark in 1978.

"Former President Bill Clinton visits the Harbor School on Governors Island," Daily News, 9/4/14. "The first day of school is always slightly out of the ordinary for students at the Harbor School, a small public high school on Governors Island accessible only by ferry. But this year was even more unusual for the group of students selected to show former President Bill Clinton how to seed oysters," the Daily News reports. "A dressed-down Clinton, wearing jeans and red sneakers, was delivered to Governors Island by police boat around 1 p.m., where he was greeted by a group of students suited up in life vests. The group explained to him their roles in the school's unique Billion Oyster Project, which aims to introduce 1 billion of the bivalves into the city's waterways over the next two decades to help filter toxins and build resilience in the ecosystem." For the complete article, click here.

"No one is home at some of Manhattan's most luxurious apartments," Daily News, 9/5/14. "More and more, international business magnates, wealthy heirs and new rich tech moguls are snapping up palatial homes in New York, renovating and redesigning them at a cost of millions, and then leaving them vacant almost all year," says the Daily News. Among those with a cache of apartments is Alex Birkenstock whose family made money on sandals and who has a pad in Lower Manhattan. "The multimillion-heir inked a deal to buy a penthouse on Broad St. in the Financial District for $5.87 million in 2007 - then commissioned the designer of the world-renowned Soho House to travel the globe collecting chic, industrial-style items such as reclaimed wood floors from the former Portuguese embassy in Paris, Belgian street lamps fashioned into chandelier style pendant lights, Art Deco kitchen doors purchased from a theater in Hawaii, and a 1,000-pound steel and brass safe bought from the Bank of France in Vichy," the Daily News dishes. "The improvements cost $4 million. But before he even saw them in place or enjoyed the view from the top floor, Birkenstock bolted. He has visited the property only once and he hasn't rented it out. Not even once." For the complete article, click here.

Downtown bulletin board
The National September 11 Memorial. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Lower Manhattan Community Remembers 9/11:
Get together with neighbors at the Manhattan Youth Downtown Community Center on the evening of Sept. 11 to share memories of 9/11 and to listen to music played by the Tribeca Chamber Players. Refreshments will be provided by chef David Bouley. The gathering this year will honor the memory of Rev. William Grant, who worked with Manhattan Youth for many years to organize 9/11 commemorative events that helped the community heal. The event begins at 7 p.m. with music, including Samuel Barber's Adagio for Strings. At 7:30 there will be conversation and refreshments followed by music at 8:15 p.m. including the Andante from Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 21, played by Nate Andersen. Admission is free. Manhattan Youth suggests a $10 donation to the 9/11 Memorial. Reserve a free ticket by clicking here.

Community evening at 9/11 museum: Free tickets will be available to the National September 11 Museum on Wednesday, Sept. 10 for  9/11 families, 9/11 rescue and recovery workers, active duty first responders, 9/11 survivors, and Lower Manhattan residents and business owners. The tickets will be valid from 5 p.m. to closing time.

To reserve free tickets to the Museum for that evening, click here or call (212) 266-6211.  Reservations are available on a first-come, first-served basis. A limited number of walk-up tickets will be available the day of for stakeholders at the Museum ticket windows. Photo identification will be required to verify your selected affiliation.

Citizen Preparedness training at PS 276: Sign up now for a Citizen Preparedness training program to be held at PS 276, 55 Battery Place in Battery Park City on Tuesday, Sept. 30 at 7 p.m.  The program will provide instruction in how to prepare for emergencies and disasters, what to do when they happen and how to recover as quickly as possible. Training participants will receive a free Citizen Preparedness Corps Response Starter Kit (one per family) containing such supplies as an AM/FM radio with batteries, a flashlight, a first aid kit, a face mask, safety goggles, an emergency blanket and more. The program is being sponsored by New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, New York State Senator Daniel Squadron, New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, City Councilmember Margaret Chin and Community Board 1. All participants must register in advance. To register, click here.

Battery Park City Block Party planning:
Plans are under way for the 13th Annual Battery Park City Block Party, which will be held on Sat., Sept. 27 from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the esplanade just south of North Cove Marina. As usual, there will be vendors, food, a talent show and games for kids. "Talent" of all kinds is welcome. To participate, email Vicki Winters at Volunteers to set up and break down the Block Party and to keep it working smoothly are needed. Contact Tammy Meltzer at to find out more and to volunteer. Bob Townley, executive director of Manhattan Youth, is coordinating the children's rides and activities. He is looking for an assistant who could become the supervisor next year. For more information, email

Fire Safety Forum for highrise buildings
: In the aftermath of several news-making fires in high-rise apartment buildings in the last few months, Community Board 1 is hosting a fire safety forum on Thursday, Sept. 18. One of the recent fires took place on Aug. 11 at Independence Plaza North. Eight people were injured in that fire. The fire safety forum is being presented in partnership with the Independence Plaza North Tenants Association, the New York City Fire Department and the Borough of Manhattan Community College. Place: Borough of Manhattan Community College, 199 Chambers St., Richard Harris Terrace. Time: 6 p.m.-7:30 p.m. Free and open to the public but space is limited. RSVP to


The "last column" standing at the destroyed World Trade Center is in the Foundation Room, a cavernous space at bedrock level in the National September 11 Museum, which opened on May 15, 2014. CB1's Planning Committee will get an update on the Sept. 11 Memorial & Museum on Monday. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 

Community Board 1 meetings take place at 49-51 Chambers St., Room 709, starting at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted. All are welcome to attend. Bring photo ID to enter the building.  

Sept. 8: Planning Committee
* World Trade Center Quarterly Update - Glenn Guzzi, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
* Silverstein Properties - Update by Malcolm Williams, Construction Manager & Dara McQuillan, Chief Marketing Officer
* 9/11 Memorial & Museum Overview - Update by Jim Connors, Executive Vice President, Operations
* 92 Fulton St., Inclusionary Housing Program Application - Resolution
* Community Board 1 Housing Reports - Presentation by Julien-Pierre A Schmitz, Planning Consultant
   a.      Green Buildings Report
   b.      Stabilization Guide Update
   c.       Affordable Housing Report Update
   d.      Ownership Data Report

* Draft Unit Owner's Guide - Presentation by Tom Goodkind
   a.       Ownership Data Report
* Rent Protection Laws - Discussion & possible resolution
* Scheduling of Planning Committee meetings - Discussion
Sept. 9: Landmarks Committee
* 456 Greenwich St., application for elevator and stair bulkhead - Resolution
* 184 Duane St.. application for penthouse enlargement - Resolution
Sept. 9: Youth & Education Committee - 6 p.m.
            Location:         49-51 Chambers Street, Room 501
* High School of Economics and Finance - Presentation by Jonathan Krellenstein, NYC Teaching Fellow - Cohort 24
* Community Education Programs - Presentation by Rev. Lauren R. Holder, Senior Program Officer, Community Engagement, Faith In Action, Trinity Wall Street
* Support for WTC Pediatric Study Proposal "Early Identification of WTC Conditions on Adolescents" - Resolution
* 4th Grade ELA scores of our local schools, presentation by Tom Goodkind
Sept. 10: Tribeca Committee
* 105 Reade St., application for corporate change for Sazon Inc. - Resolution
* Application to transfer restaurant liquor license for 90 Chambers St. to Kaede Japanese Cuisine, Inc. - Resolution
* 20 Warren St., application for a liquor license for an entity to be formed by Joseph Crotty - Resolution
* 285 West Broadway, application for alteration of liquor license to extend operating hours for Haus - Resolution
* 281 West Broadway, application for renewal of sidewalk café license for Pepolino's - Resolution
* 67 Murray St., application for liquor license for Kinjo Inc. d/b/a Gunbae - Resolution
* 281 West Broadway, application for renewal of sidewalk café license for Pepolino's - Resolution
* Schematic Geometric and Landscape Design for NYC DDC Bogardus Plaza Project HWPLZ012M - Presentation by Signe Nielsen from Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects, PC
The following notices have been received for renewal, upgrade, or transfer of wine and beer or liquor licenses or sidewalk cafe permits:
·         275 Greenwich St., application for restaurant liquor license for Chipotle Mexican Grill of Colorado, LLC
·         200 Chambers St. a/k/a 206 West Street, application for renewal of restaurant liquor license for Palm NY Downtown LLC

CALENDAR: Week of Sept. 1
Children climbing on Tom Otterness' sculpture, "The Real World" in Battery Park City. A free tour of the installation will take place on Sunday at 2 p.m.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Sept. 6: In collaboration with the Battery Park City branch library, the Tribeca Greenmarket offers Kids' Story Time hour with Greenmarket snacks and arts and crafts activities. Place: Greenwich Street, north of Chambers. Time: 10 a.m. Free. For more information about the Tribeca Greenmarket, click here. The market is open from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sept. 6: Kids can tour the new exhibit at the Skyscraper Museum, "Times Square 1984!" Then, using the Times Tower competition entries in the gallery as an example, they can make their own proposals for the site in the future. They can design their own poster boards filled with architectural sketches, plans, and ideas and submit then for a jury review. Ages 7+. Place: Skyscraper Museum, 39 Battery Place. Time: 10:30 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. Cost: $5 per child; free to Skyscraper Museum members. For more information, click here.

Sept. 6: Go for a walking tour of the historic South Street Seaport with an educator from the South Street Seaport Museum. Place: Meet on Pier 16 at the Visitors Services kiosk. Time: 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tickets: $12; $8 (students and seniors); $5 (children); free (members). Also, on Sept. 12, Sept. 19, Sept. 24 and other dates at varying times. For more information and to buy tickets, click here. The ticket price includes admission to the museum's historic ships, Peking and Ambrose.

Sept. 6: The Governors Island Art Fair has filled 100 rooms on Colonel's Row with paintings, photography, sculpture, installations, video, and sound art. Run by artists for artists, New York's largest independent exhibition is in its 7th year. GIAF organizers, 4heads, received proposals from New York and from around the world for this show. Admission is free. Catalogues are available for purchase for $20. Time: 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays, Sept. 6 - 28. Ferries to Governors Island leave from the Battery Maritime Building (10 South St.) in Lower Manhattan and from Brooklyn Bridge Park's Pier 6 (at the end of Atlantic Avenue, at Columbia Street) in Brooklyn. The ferry ride costs $2 (adults); $1 (seniors). For directions and more information call (212) 673-9074 or click here.

Sept. 7: Tour Tom Otterness' sculpture installation, "The Real World," - a miniature society cast in bronze.  Place: Battery Park City's Rockefeller Park. Time: 2 p.m. Meet near the corner of River Terrace and Chambers Street. Free.

Sept. 7: Tour Nassau Street in Lower Manhattan with the Municipal Art Society of New York. Before more of Nassau St. is lost to redevelopment, see this amazing collection of New York architecture with preservation activist, Joe Svehlak, whose first job over 55 years ago was working for an engraver on Nassau Street. Nassau Street between the Brooklyn Bridge and Wall Street contains examples of every style of architecture from the Federal and Greek Revival periods to International and Post-Modern skyscrapers. The busy Nassau Street corridor to the east of Broadway has several individual landmarks in a variety of Victorian and Neo-Classical styles. Many more of these 19th and 20th century buildings may be considered for landmarking as they are already listed on the National Register. Some early works of noted New York architects are to be found here along with some gems of cast iron architecture. Meeting place will be sent with ticket purchase. Time: 11 a.m. Tickets: $20; $15 (Municipal Art Society members). For more information or to buy tickets, click here.

Ongoing: An exhibit in the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council's arts center on Governors Island examines a pivotal time in Trisha Brown's early career as an artist and choreographer, as well as a particularly fertile moment for artistic production in New York City. With videos, photographs and installations, "Trisha Brown: Embodied Practice and Site-Specificity" highlights Brown's community of performers and artists, and the Lower Manhattan in which they lived and created. The exhibit shows Brown's investigation of simple movements such as walking or dressing, and the built environment, specifically through performances that took place on buildings inside and out, museum walls, parks, cobblestone streets, and other non-traditional performance spaces.  The exhibition also bridges the transition in Brown's practice from site- and gallery-based work to proscenium stage work, for which she became well-known throughout the 1980s and beyond. Through Sept. 28. Times: Fridays and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.  
Ongoing: "From Drills to Drums: Civil War Life on Governors Island." A program for kids, who will see first hand the lives of soldiers, civilians and prisoners on the island in the 19th century. No tickets or reservations required, but large school or day camp groups should call (212) 825-3045. Every Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Place: Governors Island. Time: 10:20 a.m. Also at 11:20 a.m. Free.

Ongoing: Hike Through History. The most comprehensive tour of Governors Island National Monument takes in nearly every highlight in the historic district. No tickets or reservations required. Visitors should be prepared to stand for a full 90 minutes and walk a distance of about 1.5 miles. Wednesdays to Sundays. Place: Governors Island. Meet at Soissons Dock. Time: 2 p.m. For more information, 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.
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, Nov. 15, 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.

Downtown Post NYC is emailed Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. 
To subscribe to Downtown Post NYC, click here

Editor: Terese Loeb Kreuzer

We welcome comments, questions and letters to the editor. Send them to

To advertise, email

Previous issues of Downtown Post NYC are archived at

All articles and photographs in Downtown Post NYC are copyrighted and
may not be reprinted or republished without written permission.
© 2014