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

News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
Volume 1, No. 130  Oct. 13, 2014
Quote of the day:
"I'm happy to say that Pier A and Pier A plaza are substantially completed." 
        - Gwen Dawson, senior vice president for the Battery Park City Authority, commenting on a project that the BPCA has worked on for the last six years. 

* Battery Park City Authority says Pier A is nearly finished, but when will it open?
* Bits & Bytes: Art Deco in Tribeca; Chipotle in Battery Park City; Southbridge Towers
* Letter to the editor: Praise for Fortenbaugh's stewardship of North Cove Marina
* Downtown Bulletin Board: Tulip planting; Pilates at Asphalt Green; Lilac fundraiser
* Community Board 1 meetings: Week of Oct. 13
* Calendar

For breaking news, go to

Hudson River sunset. Sept. 28, 2014. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 



Pier A as it looked on Oct. 8, 2014. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

"I'm happy to say that Pier A and Pier A plaza are substantially completed," Gwen Dawson, senior vice president of asset management for the Battery Park City Authority told Community Board 1's Battery Park City Committee on Oct. 7.

She said that the plantings were in place in the plaza fronting the last 19th-century pier in Manhattan, now on its way to being converted into restaurants and a visitors' center. The Battery Park City Authority was responsible for restoring the pier's core and shell and the plaza in front of it.

HPH, (Peter Poulakakos' restaurant and development group),  The Dermot Company, Danny McDonald and Michael Jewell were responsible for the fit-out. They have a 20-year lease from the Battery Park City Authority, which in turn, leases the pier from the city. 

Dawson said that the pavers had been installed on the plaza and all was completed except for the northeast corner, where a water main break had revealed some utilities that hadn't previously surfaced.

"We had to change the configuration of the tree pits," Dawson said. "We'll have to do a little bit of redesigning of the street front, but everything else will be finished in a matter of days. The objective, according to the Poulakakos Group, is to open around the end of this month. They're trying to get their sign-offs and they said they were getting very close on that."

That was a week ago. Strangely, as of Oct. 14, in addition to there being no word about when the restaurants will actually open, a spokesperson for the public relations firm representing the developers would not even reveal the name of the chef in charge of the restaurants. She also declined to say what would be on the menus and how much it would cost to dine at Pier A.  

The opening has been repeatedly delayed. In January, Poulakakos and McDonald hoped they would be open on or around Memorial Day. Then the hoped-for date was July 4. Then, late July or early August were mentioned. That was followed by the possibility of September.

Large construction projects like this are frequently delayed but the fact that there is not even a trickle of information when the Battery Park City Authority says it's all but finished with its role in the project raises several questions. People might wonder not only when Pier A will open but why the plans have been surrounded with impenetrable silence.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer


Bits & Bytes

"The Totality of This Tribeca Home Is an Homage to Art Deco,", 10/13/14. "Among the many spaces open to the public as part of Open House New York weekend was a Manhattan home that evokes a very different time-and design sensibility," says "Thirty-one years ago, Johan and Dia Scholvinck found themselves living in Tribeca and have, ever since, been remaking their home into a largely Art Deco tribute piece." For the complete article, with photos, click here.

Chipotle coming to Battery Park City: A spokesperson for Chipotle, a Mexican grill, says that a Chipotle restaurant will be opening at 325 South End Ave. in Battery Park City in the first quarter of 2015. Workmen are already redoing the interior of what was formerly the Gateway dry cleaners. Chipotle serves burritos, tacos, salads and guacamole for under $10. The Chipotle website says that most of the ingredients are organic.

Southbridge Towers update: Things are still up in the air at Southbridge Towers, the 1,651-unit co-op in the South Street Seaport whose residents seem to have voted to remove it from the subsidized Mitchell-Lama program and take it to market prices. Those in favor of privatization won by 10 votes, a margin so slim that those opposed have asked for a recount. New York State's Division of Housing and Community Renewal (DHCR), which administers Mitchell-Lama buildings, is investigating the vote. In the meantime, a letter to the New York State Attorney General from attorney Barry Mallin, who represents the group opposed to privatization, resulted in the AG agreeing not to proceed with the process of taking Southbridge Towers private until DHCR concludes its investigation.

"City, State Warn Case Could Undermine Rent Stabilization," New York Law Journal, 10/14/14. With little affordable housing in New York City compared with the large number of people who want and need it, the case of a 79-year-old woman who lives in a rent-stabilized apartment and had to declare bankruptcy is attracting considerable attention. "The ability of an elderly woman to keep her rent-stabilized apartment in Manhattan may hinge on the state Court of Appeals' interpretation of whether her lease is protected against sale in a bankruptcy proceeding," says the New York Law Journal. "The court will hear arguments Tuesday in a case that has been closely watched by real estate and tenants' rights attorneys in New York City. In an amicus curiae brief in Santiago-Monteverde v. Pereira, 180, the city and New York state argued that the case raises important questions about protections provided to leaseholders in rent-stabilized apartments at a time when moderately priced housing has never been at a higher premium in the city." The woman's landlord wants to buy her rent-stabilized lease as part of the bankruptcy proceeding. The funds would be used to pay off her debts of around $23,000 but then she could be evicted. The case could set a precedent for other rent-stabilized tenants. For the complete article, click here.

"346 Broadway Conversion Plans Include Penthouse Addition,", 10/14/14. The proposed condo conversion for 346 Broadway has raised some hackles at Community Board 1. In the current plan, the space allocated for use by the community board is less than promised, but that's not all. There's also a penthouse addition that drew fire. "The landmarked building, an 1898, two-block-long Renaissance Revival that was formerly the New York Criminal Courts, is being converted into condos by the Elad Group and Peebles Corporation, who recently presented their plans (at multiple meetings, to multiple committees) to the local board," says "During the landmarks committee meeting, the developers, along with architect John H. Beyer of Beyer Blinder Belle, outlined their design for the building, and while they will be preserving multiple interior elements, as they are interior landmarks, the board still found issue with a few things-mainly the penthouse addition, something that is never popular with preservationists." noted that, "Historic spaces that will be preserved and restored include a grand curved staircase, a conference room on the fourth floor, the Banking Hall, and the clock tower on the roof." For the complete article, with photos, click here.


Letter to the editor

North Cove Marina. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

To the editor:
(Re: "Battery Park City's North Cove Marina up for grabs," DPNYC, 10/8/14): Your tribute to Fortenbaugh's devoted and highly successful work in getting New Yorkers to experience their harbor under sail was worthy of the subject and I hope will stir all kinds of readers to respond!

For decades I have been following his great work in getting more New Yorkers to sail the waterways that embrace and sustain their city. Over these years I have met many people who have benefited from his programs, which originated in the South Street Seaport in the 1980s but soon graduated to the North Cove Marina in Battery Park City.

In my work in the South Street Seaport Museum and later in the National Maritime Historical Society, I have become continuously aware of the educational value of these programs which both lift people's spirits and lift their sights in understanding what seafaring values and experience have added to the city's story, opening fresh perspectives and opportunities to people in all walks of life.

I thank him for this very creative and challenging contribution to people's experience of New York, and add my voice to that of Captain Robert Rustchak and the people of Save Our Seaport who urge the renewal of his contract to manage the Battery Park City marina, which he has done so successfully in fair weather and foul, providing a notable service to New York and New Yorkers.

Peter Stanford
President Emeritus
National Maritime Historical Society

From the editor:
Michael Fortenbaugh has asked that people who support his application to remain the manager of North Cove Marina write him letters that he can include with his proposal. His email address is Mailed letters can be sent to North Cove Marina Management, 375 South End Ave., Apt. 20L, New York, NY, 10280. All responses must be received by Friday, Oct. 17 in order to be included.

We welcome letters to the editor. Email them to We reserve the right to edit them for clarity and length.



Downtown bulletin board
Tulips blooming in Bowling Green Park, April 1, 2012. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Community planting day at Bowling Green Park:
Get your hands dirty this Saturday, Oct. 18
at Bowling Green Park. Everyone is invited to help plant thousands of tulips at the Fall Community Planting Day from 10 a.m. to noon. Tools and gloves wiill be supplied by the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation. There will also be refreshments and activities for kids. The event is co-sponsored by Con Edison, WilmerHale, the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, New York City Council Member Margaret Chin, Community Board 1 and Whole Foods.

Free senior swim: Seniors can swim for free at the Downtown Community Center, 120 Warren St. from Monday through Thursday, 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. The Community Center offers aerobic water classes for seniors on Mondays and Thursdays at 12:45 p.m. To register, click here or call Lily at (212) 766-1104, ext. 221.

Asphalt Green Battery Park City expanding Pilates program: Due to overwhelming demand, Asphalt Green Battery Park City is launching a major expansion of its Pilates program, including eight dedicated Pilates Reformer classes each week starting October 27, with plans to grow the number of classes to over 15 per week in the coming months, adding a second room dedicated to Pilates. New equipment is also being added that will allow Asphalt Green to offer a wide array of classes and help accommodate various populations ranging from teens to the elderly. The programs will be geared to athletes, pre- and post-natal moms and populations with injuries as well as to casual fitness enthusiasts. For members, the new Pilates Reformer classes cost $45 for one class or $400 for a 10-session package. For non-members, the cost is $55 for one class or $500 for a 10-session package. For more information, click here.

Fundraiser: The Lilac Preservation Project, custodian of the landmarked lighthouse tender, Lilac, berthed at Pier 25 in Hudson River Park, is holding a cocktail fundraiser on Nov. 12 at Circle Rouge, 241 West Broadway. Proceeds from tickets and a silent auction will help to maintain the ship. Time: 6 p.m.-8 p.m. Tickets: $50; $35 (early bird price through Oct. 20); $25 (Lilac volunteers); free to those who formerly served on the ship. For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

DeLury Square Park Holiday Gift Fair: Friends of DeLury Square Park will hold their second Arts & Crafts Gift Fair at Gold and Fulton Streets as part of the citywide "It's My Parks Day" fall planting. The double festivities will take place on Saturday, Oct. 18, starting at 10 a.m. The Arts and Crafts Fair will feature many handmade items plus jewelry, accessories, baby gifts, ceramics, art work, photography and coffee-table books. All proceeds from the fair will help maintain and beautify the park. Volunteers who wish to help with planting that day can just show up in the park between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Friends of DeLury Square Park meet once a month and welcome volunteers. Anyone who would like to join should email



A tour bus on State Street. The impact of tour buses in Lower Manhattan and how to regulate them will be discussed by CB1's Quality of Life Committee on Oct. 16.
 (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

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

Oct. 14: Youth & Education Committee
* Field time allocated at Murry Bergtraum Lower East Side field - Update by Andrew Zelter, Downtown Little League
* South Street Seaport Museum Education Programs - Update by Margaret Flanagan, Museum Educator
* Peck Slip, Tweed classroom divisions - Report
* The Proposed Re-siting of The Peck Slip School - Resolution
* Fall 2014 school registers - Report
Oct. 15: Executive Committee
* Capital and Expense Budget Requests for FY 2016 - Resolution
*  Review of January-June 2015 calendars dates
* Overview of total district population by neighborhood - Presentation by Diana Switaj, Director of Planning and Land Use & Jeff Sun, Community Planning Fellow
* City Council hearing, Oct 23, 2014 RE: Int. 378, A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to reducing greenhouse gases by 80 percent by 2050  - Discussion & possible resolution
* Committee reports
Oct. 16: Quality of Life Committee
* Construction Update - NYC Department of Transportation, Office of the Lower Manhattan Commissioner
* Holland Tunnel-area traffic noise - Discussion
* Tour buses in Lower Manhattan - Resolution
* Drones in Lower Manhattan - Resolution
* Reducing the use of carryout bags - Resolution

Public hearing for Community Board 1's capital and expense budget priorities for FY2016: A public hearing on Oct. 28 provides an opportunity for members of the Lower Manhattan community to let Community Board 1 know what their budget priorities are for the district. The board will finalize its priorities during the business session of the meeting following the hearing. Anyone in the community may attend and speak. This is a link to the budget priorities for FY 2015. For more information call (212) 442-5050 or email Place: National Museum of the American Indian, 1 Bowling Green, Diker Pavilion, 1st floor. Time: 6 p.m.

CALENDAR: Week of Oct. 13
A tugboat at work on Staten Island. On Oct. 19, the Working Harbor Committee is offering a circumnavigation of Staten Island. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

Oct. 14: Julia Wolfe's folk-infused "Steel Hammer" returns to the Winter Garden in Battery Park City, part of New Sounds Live from Brookfield Place. The Bang on a Can All-Stars will team up with vocalists Katie Geissinger, Emily Eagan, and Molly Quinn for this free CD release celebration. Inspired by Wolfe's love for the legends and music of Appalachia, "Steel Hammer" culls from both the music and oral traditions of the region. The text is taken from over 200 versions of the John Henry ballad - based on hearsay, recollection, and tall tales - and explores the subject of human vs. machine in this quintessential American legend. Steel Hammer stretches the standard instrumentation of Bang on a Can All-Stars with wooden bones, mountain dulcimer, banjo, clogging, whistling and more. 7:30 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

Oct. 14: At the Pen Parentis Literary Salon, four celebrated authors who are also parents will read from their work. Tonight, hear Nick Flynn, author of, most recently, "The Replacements" and "Another Bullshit Night in Suck City;" Elizabeth Kadetsky, author of the memoir "First There Is a Mountain;" Darin Strauss, author of "Chang & Eng" and the National Book Critics Circle award-winning memoir "Half a Life;" and Rachel Zucker, author of "MOTHERs" and "The Pedestrians." Each author will read from new work and then participate in an informal, salon-style roundtable. The authors' books will be available for purchase (for signings) from The Park Slope Community Bookstore. Happy hour specials on beer and wine available. Place: Hotel Andaz, 75 Wall St.. Time: 7 p.m. Free admission. RSVP is recommended, but not required. To RSVP, click here. The Pen Parentis Literary Salon is open to adults over the age of 21.

Oct. 17: Celebrate what would have been jazz pianist Thelonious Monk's 97th birthday with a day of free concerts at Brookfield Place showcasing performances by an international lineup of jazz virtuosos. The musicians will once again fill the Winter Garden in Battery Park City with the swinging sounds of Monk, an architect of bebop whose influence can be heard throughout the world. The celebration will kick off with a midday concert featuring Grammy-nominated Elio Villafranca and the James Weidman Trio, both veterans of previous Monk birthday bashes, and will continue in the evening with a three-hour mini-marathon. Place: Winter Garden. Time: 12:30 p.m.-2 p.m., Elio Villafranca, James Weidman Trio. 6:30 p.m.-9:30 p.m., Jazz House Ambassadors, David Weiss Sextet, Renee Rosnes Trio, Arturo O'Farrill Sextet. Free. For more information, click here.

Oct. 18: More than 25 restaurants will participate in the 5th annual Taste of the Seaport, which will bring food, beverages, live music and family-friendly activities to the historic South Street Seaport. Proceeds benefit the Spruce Street School (PS 397) and the Peck Slip School (PS 343). Time: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Tickets: $35 for five tastes. $120 for a family pack of 20 tastes. To buy tickets, click here.

Oct. 18: The Paris Cafe in the South Street Seaport celebrates Taste of the Seaport with an After Party. There will be Happy Hour specials from  4 p.m. to 10 p.m. (wine and beer, $4, select martinis $7), traditional Irish music from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and a DJ starting at 7 p.m. until late. Place: 119 South Street. Phone: (212) 240-9797. For more information, click here.

Oct. 19: Circumnavigation of Staten Island with the Working Harbor Committee. Capt. Joseph Ahlstrom, Professor of Marine Transportation at SUNY Maritime College and an expert on Staten Island history and maritime, will provide the narration for the three-and-a-half hour cruise aboard a New York Waterway ferry. It will take in several lighthouses, tug yards, giant shipping terminals and the famous graveyard of ships as well as the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Cash bar on board. Guests are welcome to bring their own food. Place: Departs from Pier 11 at the corner of Wall and South Streets. Boarding begins at 12:45 p.m. Cruise departs at 1 p.m. and returns at 4:30 p.m. Tickets: $55; $45 (seniors, Working Harbor Committee members and kids under 12). For more information or to purchase tickets, click here.

Oct. 19:
Compline by Candlelight featuring Byrd's Cantiones Sacrae performed by the Choir of Trinity Wall Street. A meditative musical service in historic St. Paul's Chapel (built in 1766) on Broadway at Fulton Street. Time: 8 p.m. Free.
Through Oct. 19: Sail New York harbor on the South Street Seaport Museum's landmarked 1885 schooner, Pioneer. Varying times. Place: Pier 16 in the South Street Seaport. Tickets: $38; $28 (museum members); $32 (students and seniors); $20 (children); $5 (children under 2). For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

Through Oct. 25:
"Artist as Witness: 9/11 Responders Watercolors" by Aggie Kenny at the New York City Police Museum. This will be the Police Museum's last exhibit at its current location. The museum will close on Oct. 25. Place: 45 Wall St. Open Mon.-Sat., 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Cost: $5; children, free. For more information, click here.

Through Oct. 31: Artist and photographer Elisa Decker has an exhibit of photographs entitled "Hudson River Park from My Perch" in the office of Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer. Decker took the photographs from her Westbeth apartment, recording the transformation of the landscape through weather and seasonal changes. Place: 1 Centre St., 19th floor (bring photo ID to enter the building). Time: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

Weekends through Nov. 2: Art in the Park at Tompkinsville Park on Staten Island is a free ferry ride across New York harbor from Lower Manhattan, and a short walk from the ferry. Food, music and local artists. Oct. 18, Oct. 19, Oct. 25, Oct. 26, Nov. 1 and Nov. 2. Time: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information about Tompkinsville Park, 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.

Ongoing: "Give Me Liberty," a solo exhibition of new works by Brooklyn-based artist Sylvanus Shaw, is at the Fraunces Tavern Museum. In this site-specific exhibition, Shaw utilizes images from the Museum's permanent collection, invoking imagery of early American statehood in media ranging from oil on panel to collaged holograms, security envelopes, and other mediums.
Through March 16, 2015. Place: Fraunces Tavern Museum, 54 Pearl St. Museum hours: Mon.-Sat., noon to 5 p.m. Admission: $7; $4 (seniors, students, children 6-8); free (children under 5 and active duty military). For more information, click here

Mark your calendar: On Oct. 22, the South Street Seaport Museum will open its 12 Fulton St. galleries for a special tour of the two "old hotels" that occupied the Schermerhorn Row buildings in the 19th century. The tour is offered as part of Archtober, the fourth annual festival of architecture and activities in New York City. The two hotels  - Roger's Dining Salon and the Fulton Ferry Hotel - left behind faded wallpaper, partitioned rooms where the guests slept, the stairway they used for access, the laundry room and more. Of the two, the Fulton Ferry Hotel is the most famous thanks to Joseph Mitchell's piece for the New Yorker, published in his book "Up in the Old Hotel." Mitchell along with Louis Morino, owner of Sloppy Louie's, ascended the elevator shaft located at 93 South St. to discover the remains of the old, boarded-up hotel on the upper floors of the building. It was a haunting journey into a past that is still there and as evocative as ever. Time: 6 p.m.-7 p.m. Tickets: $15; $12.50 (South Street Seaport Museum members). For tickets, 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.