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October 15, 2005 5:16 PM   Subscribe

Skyline-New-York-City.jpg [this is big]
posted by 31d1 (74 comments total)

 
I can't find ground zero.
posted by angry modem at 5:19 PM on October 15, 2005


Does anyone else think it would be fun to divide this into multiple pieces, consecutively assign a piece to each of your window manager of choice's virtual desktops, and enable edge-flipping?
posted by Grod at 5:27 PM on October 15, 2005


Ooo ... I see two of my old apartments! Nice view of the Flatiron too.
posted by R. Mutt at 5:38 PM on October 15, 2005


Ground zero - is it about 20% left, just in front of a sandy coloured hi-rise with 3 cloumns? Near the river/shoreline?

Nice find, BTW.
posted by dash_slot- at 5:50 PM on October 15, 2005


Wait a minute, I'll go to the window and wave.
posted by HTuttle at 5:51 PM on October 15, 2005


This photo was presumably taken somewhere high above Central Park ...?
posted by Dr. Wu at 5:52 PM on October 15, 2005


This is cool.
posted by sbutler at 5:52 PM on October 15, 2005


Actually, I think I've worked this out: the pic is shot from midtown, so to locate GZ one scrolls right to view lower Manhattan, right? So GZ is hidden behind other skyscrapers, I believe (never been to the US, this is guesswork).
posted by dash_slot- at 5:54 PM on October 15, 2005


[this is a big city]
posted by Citizen Premier at 5:56 PM on October 15, 2005


What?? It's from the ESB, isn't it?
posted by rschroed at 5:57 PM on October 15, 2005


A one photo post?

Very cool, I like it.
posted by caddis at 5:58 PM on October 15, 2005


It's certainly from above the Empire State Building, yes.
posted by nicwolff at 5:59 PM on October 15, 2005


Oh. Uh.
Duh.
posted by Dr. Wu at 6:06 PM on October 15, 2005


The ESB is between 5th and 6th Avenues; if you sight down between them toward the harbor the World Trade Center was right between where they would hit the Hudson River.
posted by nicwolff at 6:07 PM on October 15, 2005


Am I right that this isn't a photomosaic, but rather must have been taken by some kind of 360-degree camera held somehow above the spire of the ESB? Neat.
posted by nicwolff at 6:09 PM on October 15, 2005


Yeah, I spent a second looking for the Empire State building. Oops.

Can't see my apartment, but if you look to the right of the Chrysler building, above the bridge, you'll see four smokestacks. The leftmost one is where I used to work.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 6:20 PM on October 15, 2005


you know, four years+ have passed, and I still look for the two big guys downtown, and I'm still shocked that they aren't there, that by magic they haven't come back somehow

a few weeks after, I was talking to a friend and asked him, how does the skyline look without them? (I had only seen photos and tv footage). he choked a little and answered, like Minneapolis

every time I visit New York I cannot avoid to be terrified by that huge hole in the sky, even I'm prepared to see it at this point, even if I know it's there

thanks for the post, by the way
posted by matteo at 6:38 PM on October 15, 2005


I think Central park is behind the "near cluster" of skyscrapers at the end of the picture. Basically the big field in the middle of all these buildings.

What, by the way is the "far cluster" of skyscrapers visible in the middle picture. Looks to be at the end of the island. Is that "upper" Manhattan?

If you ask me, I think NYC is the greatest city in the world. I just find these 'forests of skyscrapers" to be awe inspiring.
posted by delmoi at 6:42 PM on October 15, 2005


The thin black tower next to the Chrysler building is the trump world tower, no?

Btw, I always thought the Chrysler building was better looking then the empire state building.
posted by delmoi at 6:45 PM on October 15, 2005


Here's the google map, for a little orientation. The mark is at the Empire State building.

In the middle of the image looking South the closest park you can see is, I think, Madison Square Park and on the next major street past that is Union Square. Past those, you can see the Financial District in the distance where the WTC would have been.

At the right side of the image, a ways off is Central Park. The big block of green.

I've always thought the Chrysler building was the best looking in New York.
posted by joegester at 7:04 PM on October 15, 2005


delmoi, the far cluster is downtown, Wall Street, financial district.
posted by etc. at 7:06 PM on October 15, 2005


I think it's just a blend of individual photos. If you look due west, then a little south there is a building with very crooked walls. Then a little north of due west there is a weird distortion on the New Jersey shore.
posted by maledictory at 7:40 PM on October 15, 2005




This is where Ground Zero is, just to be clear. That's at the southern tip of the island in the Financial District, aka the "far cluster."

dash_slot's wrong location is somewhere east of Midtown.

(I know because I can see the site from my apartment, which is just left-of-center in the cropped photo above.)
posted by chasing at 7:46 PM on October 15, 2005


Gol-OL-ly! That's a lot of freaking concrete.
**goes back to looking at cornfields**
posted by spock at 7:47 PM on October 15, 2005


To me too there's always going to be something missing in those pictures... and no empty "spike in the sky" is ever going to change that.
posted by clevershark at 7:51 PM on October 15, 2005


Yeah, I miss those Indian encampments too.
posted by thirteenkiller at 8:00 PM on October 15, 2005


I (heart) NY.
posted by R. Mutt at 8:00 PM on October 15, 2005


American cities really do look like SimCity 2000. Only with more unrealistic disasters.
posted by thirteenkiller at 8:01 PM on October 15, 2005


See I actually thought the pictures were old ones taken from the WTC, and thought it would be funny to say WHERE'S GROUND ZERO???????? but I guess I fucked that one up RIGHT?
posted by angry modem at 8:13 PM on October 15, 2005


Wow - I wish I had one of these for Chicago.
posted by wfrgms at 8:43 PM on October 15, 2005


Hey! There's my house!
posted by fungible at 9:09 PM on October 15, 2005


I think NYC is the greatest city in the world

Try Tokyo, as far as building goes. I was struck looking at this about how (apparently) quickly NYC peters out. Tokyo's got half a dozen healthy subcores (Hibiya, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Roppongi/Akasaka, Shiodome, Ikebukuro) and medium-density fill that goes out as far as you can see from the tallest building. I used to work on a 41st floor in Shinjuku, helluva a view, especially at night...
posted by Heywood Mogroot at 9:18 PM on October 15, 2005


I was thinking the same thing, Heywood. You can actually see some open space w/o buildings.
posted by tomplus2 at 9:22 PM on October 15, 2005


Nice!
posted by carter at 9:32 PM on October 15, 2005


tokyo
posted by 31d1 at 9:50 PM on October 15, 2005


Yes, it's on the Empire State Building. One of the oddnesses of its construction is that being built during the depression there was no more development of highrises for a number of years, so it stands very much alone in the lower middle of Manhattan. Midtown developed mainly to the north and east of the ESB, and that's what we're looking at:

From left to right:
It's facing north-northeast.
* The MetLife building is what used to be called the Pan Am Building. It was (still?) owned by the Kennedy family.
* The Chrysler Building is the one with the elaborate art-deco spire.
* The tall, thin black spire is the Trump World Tower. Behind it is the Queensborough Bridge, over the East River, below which you can see Roosevelt Island and a bit of the old mental hospital.
* In front of the tip of Roosevelt Island is the UN Secretariat.
* The aqua building above that, off in Queens, is a Citicorp back office facility.
* Down along the East River, you see Newtown Creek, the border between Queens and Brooklyn. A lot of the east bank of the river neighborhoods are "hot" because they're affordable compared to Manhattan -- LI City, Greenpoint, Williamsburg, DUMBO.
* About 1/3 from L, you're looking straight at downtown Brooklyn, once the 3rd largest city in the US in its own right. Close in front of you is the gold pyramid of the New York Life building. The concrete stream running roughly in this direction? That's lower Broadway. Right down below you can see the Flatiron Building.
* Way way out in Brooklyn is Coney Island, where there are clusters of apartment buildings on the shore. Farther east is JFK. At the SW tip of Brooklyn is the Verrazano Narrows Bridge to Staten Island.
* At 40% from L, you're looking due south to Lower Manhattan -- what's called Downtown (financial district) as opposed to Midtown (service businesses, corp headquarters). At the right of this cluster is where the Twin Towers used to be, at the foot of Sixth Ave. You could see them from everywhere in town except when there was something directly in your way. They were a navigational beacon for the pedestrian. Not having them there ... I haven't been there since, I can't imagine. A hole in the sky. Like a different city. Like Minneapolis.
* (Due south, along 5th Ave, there's an obvious stitch.)
* That little blip on an island is the Statue of Liberty. The slightly closer island is Ellis Island. Then you have Liberty State Park, which used to be the prewar train terminal where you'd transfer to a ferry to get into the city.
* Next you have the very new towers of downtown Jersey City. This is now backoffices for the companies Downtown. They're connected by the PATH train and the Hudson Tunnel.
* In between you and Downtown is (L to R, roughly) the Lower East Side, East Village, Greenwich Village, and a bit south of that along the Hudson, Soho and Tribeca.
* Now looking due west. Across the Hudson are the Jersey suburbs of Hoboken, Union City, and Weehawken. You can see the beginnings of the Hudson Palisades.
* On this side, that black sliver tower I don't know the name offhand, but if you look down you can see the barest bit of a curve of Madison Square Garden. Up to its right, this side of the river, is the Javits Center. To its left, the elevated rail line that goes S then E then S again is the N part of the High Line.
* At about 60% from L you can see a curvy highway ramp. This is the bus entrance to the Port Authority Bus Terminal.
* At about 80% from L you're looking straight up Broadway to Times Square. The new post-modern skyscrapers have been built to redevelop it from squalor. At the very bottom of the screen here is the NBC building and Rockefeller Center. The Verizon Center is, I think, the old Time-Life building? Have to double-check. Somewhere down in there is Radio City Music Hall.
* Looking due North is Central Park. Way up at its top edge is Harlem. Along its west edge for quite a ways are swank residential buildings where actors and so forth live. Way up at the top, crossing the Hudson, is the George Washington Bridge.
* And at 90% we're back to where we started. The silver building N of MetLife is the Citicorp Tower. Behind it you can see the Triborough Bridge, and the Bronx.

We hope you've enjoyed your trip to the top of the Empire State Building. Please enter the elevator and remember that your ears may pop.
posted by dhartung at 9:55 PM on October 15, 2005


Thanks dhartung.
posted by lazy-ville at 10:33 PM on October 15, 2005


Don't forget about the Jimmy James Towers


posted by Phantomx at 10:37 PM on October 15, 2005


Thanks for the tour, dhartung.
It reminded me of the tour guides on the London millenium wheel who have an equally interesting patter.
I've only visited NY once, but what a town.
posted by bystander at 10:44 PM on October 15, 2005


This would be as good a time as any to ask - has anyone found any novel ways to take a picture like this with a standard SLR camera without doing the stitching? I noticed this contraption on the Apple Quicktime page, which seems to be just a mirror ball that you stick on the front of the camera. With special software, it takes the resulting radial picture and flattens it out into a normal one. What kind of software would be necessary to do this?

Seems like the kid who did those HDR renderings with the HalfLife 2 models sitting in his front yard did something along these lines.. any tips?
posted by odinsdream at 10:48 PM on October 15, 2005


This is fun. Scrolling about half a screen in from the right edge, down at the bottom amidst a few squares of grass or other vegetation, there's a black and gold (?) building that looks something like Masonic Temple, or at least gives me that kind of impression from this angle. Anyone know it?
posted by planetkyoto at 10:51 PM on October 15, 2005


That building is on the South edge of Bryant Park, planetkyoto. I don't know what is though.
posted by muckster at 11:33 PM on October 15, 2005


Ok, this building has always interested me, so I looked it up: it's the American Standard Building at 40 W. 40th St. Here's what Norval White has to say:
Originally American Radiator Building. 1924. Hood & Fouilhoux. Addtion 1937, Andre Fouilhoux. Hotel Conversion, 2000. William Tabler and David Chipperfield.

The centerpiece in a row of Renaissance club facades is designer Hood's black brick and gold terra-cotta, Gothic-inspired tower. The first-floor facade, of bronze and polished black granite, and the black marble and mirror-clad lobby are worth a close look.

Poetic and artistic allusions include Georgia O'Keeffe's Radiator Building-Night, New York and in words (Architecture Magazine, 1925): "the black...suggesting a huge coal pile, and the gold and yellow of its high points the glow of flames of an unbanked fire." Wow!

Not to be outdone, famed renderer Hugh Ferriss declaimed in 1929: "It has probably provoked more arguments among laymen on the subject of architectural values than any other structure in the country."

Now a boutique hotel.
At least I hope we're talking about the same building....
posted by muckster at 11:44 PM on October 15, 2005


Image hosted by Photobucket.com
posted by stenseng at 11:44 PM on October 15, 2005


pfft... this is so old. they came out with that version of simcity like 4 years ago.
posted by crunchland at 12:13 AM on October 16, 2005


Thanks, muckster, that's it, all right.
posted by planetkyoto at 12:49 AM on October 16, 2005


Nice tour, dan. I went to the ESB observatory a couple of years ago, and my annotated photos are here. I need to get back there on a sunnier day with a higher-resolution camera. (And here's a relief from the American Radiator Building, which is indeed glorious.)
posted by Vidiot at 1:20 AM on October 16, 2005


Try Tokyo, as far as building goes. I was struck looking at this about how (apparently) quickly NYC peters out. Tokyo's got half a dozen healthy subcores (Hibiya, Shinjuku, Shibuya, Roppongi/Akasaka, Shiodome, Ikebukuro) and medium-density fill that goes out as far as you can see from the tallest building. I used to work on a 41st floor in Shinjuku, helluva a view, especially at night...

Yes - the only decent park in Tokyo is Yoyogi, which is usually PACKED with people because it's the only decent park. Bizarrely, Ueno Park has few green spaces. Tokyo lacks green spaces period.

Also as far as "greatness" in terms of size, Tokyo merges with many other conurbations - you can take a train all the way to Chiba city (about 50-60km away) and not see a break in concrete housing.
posted by FieldingGoodney at 1:35 AM on October 16, 2005


And here's the referenced O'Keeffe.
posted by muckster at 1:42 AM on October 16, 2005


I can indeed see my apt. building, but not my actual apartment in this picture.
posted by falconred at 1:54 AM on October 16, 2005


Great picture.

Regarding Tokyo, this doesn't quite give the scale of the buildings in the immediate vicinity but it does give some indication of how the concrete does continue beyond your vision - something I previously imagined was purely the domain of science fiction novels. (Some of the depth is lost due to the haze which became exaggerated in the snap I took.)

FieldingGoodney: I spent 5 days in Tokyo earlier this year and got the impression that whilst concrete certainly dominated, there were various parks of a decent size? Maybe I didn't spent long enough there! Maybe the number of temples and shrines compensates a little?
posted by Kiell at 2:34 AM on October 16, 2005


Bah , come back when you've got a volcano in the middle of yer toon.
posted by sgt.serenity at 2:50 AM on October 16, 2005


I wish someone would take the whole thing and annotate so us clueless foreigners had more idea what we were looking at.

Very cool, though.

" This photo was presumably taken somewhere high above Central Park ...?

The image is a composite constructed from many many photos (I would imagine). You get back to the beginning when you get to the far end, so the image captures more than a 360 degree rotation. I'm just saying in case that wasn't clear to someone.
posted by nthdegx at 2:51 AM on October 16, 2005


Cool
posted by Smedleyman at 3:19 AM on October 16, 2005


I wish someone would take the whole thing and annotate so us clueless foreigners had more idea what we were looking at.

I'd love to do that, but Flickr shrinks panoramas down so far that it's useless. And they won't let you put notes on original-size views. Grrrr.
posted by Vidiot at 4:15 AM on October 16, 2005


Annotated version

(NB I am a clueless foreigner)
posted by cillit bang at 5:58 AM on October 16, 2005


chasing, your position was about right, but the scale was all wrong. People forget just how friggin' tall those things were.


posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:59 AM on October 16, 2005


More like:


posted by cillit bang at 6:17 AM on October 16, 2005


If you ever want to play around with stiching panoramas, try out autostich. It is by far the easiest and BEST pano stiching software I've ever used - and I've tested everything from free software to 500euro packages.

PC only, sorry. :(
posted by jedrek at 6:48 AM on October 16, 2005


*marks dhartung as best answer*
posted by grouse at 7:52 AM on October 16, 2005


Lovely. Definitely taken from the Empire State Building. When I first came to NYC I tried to do something similar (like several million other people, I'm sure) by the old-fashioned method of taking shot after shot in a full circle, so I recognise the view.
posted by Decani at 7:53 AM on October 16, 2005


cillit bang: No, no, that's all wrong. They were more to the right. /kidding
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:08 AM on October 16, 2005


stensing you owe me a new keyboard.
posted by Popular Ethics at 9:23 AM on October 16, 2005


Slightly off-topic NYCFilter question: If you're standing at the base of the Empire State Building, can you see the Chrysler Building, or is it obscured by other buildings?

I ask mainly out of a curiosity arising from a recent reading of Neal Bascomb's Higher, an excellent history of the race between the ESB and Chrysler bldgs for the tallest-in-the-world crown. Tried to check for myself last time I was in NYC, but it was too rainy to tell.
posted by gompa at 10:07 AM on October 16, 2005


Re: the Towers and skyline issue, it's very odd for me personally, because I don't have many memories of the Towers , having only visited the City a handful of times (and usually as a child/early teen) prior to 9/11. Soon after 9/11 I visited often (long-distance relationship) and I now work two blocks from Ground Zero (and I am in Ground Zero twice weekdaily, as I take PATH from Jersey).

So my entire adult experience with NYC has been sans the WTC, meaning that for me it's almost the exact opposite of most born-and-bred New Yorkers--when I see pictures with the towers in them, it looks a little odd, because it doesn't match up with my own memories/daily observances of the skyline.


Also, a minor note re: Dan's excellent tour:

* Next you have the very new towers of downtown Jersey City. This is now backoffices for the companies Downtown. They're connected by the PATH train and the Hudson Tunnel.

Just in case anyone gets the wrong idea, only one or two of those buildings was built/completed after 2001...it's not like Jersey City was a hamlet before 9/11 forced some corps to relocate space. Yea, much of the built-up stuff is still very new compared to Manhattan, but not necessarily 4-years-old new.
posted by cyrusdogstar at 10:14 AM on October 16, 2005


If you're standing at the base of the Empire State Building

From the base? No way. You can from the top, though.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 10:14 AM on October 16, 2005


"The Verizon Center is, I think, the old Time-Life building? Have to double-check. Somewhere down in there is Radio City Music Hall."

No, the old Time-Life Building is still the Time-Life Building. I'm sitting in it right now. (It's just visible in the picture, directly to the left/west of the Rockefeller Center buildings. You can make out a red sign on the building just to its north.)

The building with the spire in Times Square is the new Reuters building. Across from that is Conde Nast's new HQ.

Across the Hudson, directly above that black sliver of a building, is the helix where the Lincoln Tunnel spirals out into NJ. To the right of that and a little further off, sports fans can just make out Giants Stadium and the Continental Airlines Arena (a little white blob), home to the Nets, Devils and marathon Springsteen shows.
posted by stargell at 11:44 AM on October 16, 2005


Wow. You know, I've been to New York many times but this is the first time I've really got sense of where everything really is, thanks 31d1 and especially dhartung for the tour.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 12:02 PM on October 16, 2005


Another massive panoramic image can be found here. It's of the waterfront area in the historic center of Venice, Italy.
posted by sntamonica at 1:13 PM on October 16, 2005


jersey city!
posted by adampsyche at 5:45 PM on October 16, 2005


My apartment is on the hill out past the Citibank Tower of Doom (the backoffice one in Queens), where there are those towers (projects).

All the green in near Queens is cemeteries. And dhartung left out that the second bridge is the best of them all: the Williamsburg!
posted by dame at 6:01 PM on October 16, 2005


I have to disagree with Heywood that New York's skyline "peters out" while Tokyo's skyline just keeps going. I think this is an apples and oranges problem that is driven by differing perspectives: The photo here is taken from the 102nd floor (I think), and thus everything around it looks substantially lower; the Tokyo photo was clearly taken much closer to the ground. In the NYC photo, you are high enough that you can see several miles in each direction, so you can see residential neighborhoods like the West Village where yes, indeed, buildings are short. Anyway, if you stand in midtown on the 40th floor of an office building, it looks like New York really just goes on forever.

Anyway, if I had to take another skyline, I think I'd vote for Hong Kong.
posted by huzzahhuzzah at 10:03 PM on October 16, 2005


Great drama to that Hong Kong shot. Evocative. Missing all the junks/daos (sp?) that dot the harbor though... As for the photo of my current home, camouflaged somewhere in the near left quadrant, I echo the nostalgic whispers about the twins. And suggest that the grandeur of NYC's skyline does seem to have been diminished somehow in this photo. Maybe it's the bird's eye view, or (as huzzahhuzzah proposes) the elevated angle. Or maybe it's just that NY cynicism seeping into the camera lense?!?!
posted by geoflaneur at 1:08 PM on October 17, 2005


Thanks, cillit bang.
posted by nthdegx at 3:05 PM on October 17, 2005


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