Brooklyn's Gowanus Canal, long nicknamed the "Lavender Lake" for its copious oil slicks, has gained a new title : Superfund Site. New Yorkers respond with really cool photography. While some developers bow out in light of the recent news, other area developers, hoping for a speedy cleanup of the industrial waste and, uh ... other things ... vow to continue their plans to revitalize the formerly-industrial corridor.
Broadway, block by block, 1899. (SLNYPL) "A 19th century version of Google's Street View, allowing us to flip through the images block by block, passing parks, churches, novelty stores, furriers, glaziers, and other businesses of the city's past."
Some of the only known aerial photos, taken by a police helicopter, the only aircraft allowed in the Manhattan airspace during the attacks, of September the 11th have been released. [more inside]
"What Would You Change About the NYC Taxi Cab?" is one response to The New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission's call for a new taxi cab design. [more inside]
How much life could you find in one cubic foot? With a 12-inch green metal-framed cube, photographer David Liittschwager (of the Endangered Species Project) surveyed biodiversity in land, water, tropical and temperate environments around the globe for National Geographic. At each locale he set down the cube and started watching, counting, and photographing with the help of his assistant and many biologists. The goal: to represent the creatures that lived in or moved through that space. The team then sorted through their habitat cubes and tallied every inhabitant, down to a size of about a millimeter. [more inside]
Precursor to Google Maps? Overhead photos of NYC circa 1924. (Click the camera icon and slide to 1924)
Many visitors and residents of New York City have long been befuddled by the emergency brake hanging in each NYC subway car. Signs indicate that one should not use the emergency brake during many emergencies- Fire, medical problem or need for police. But then, when should we use the emergency brake? (vimeo)
New time lapse video [04:48] of the salvage of U.S. Airways Flight 1549 (aka 'Miracle on the Hudson'). The A320 is up for sale. It was put "on the online auction block by the insurance company Chartis...The sale attracted widespread attention within hours on Friday, and Chartis was apparently so inundated by curiosity or online bids that it removed the information from its Web site. Chartis identified the plane only by its registration number and its family name, A320, and yet it was instantly recognizable." [more inside]
11 things you didn't know about pinball. Worth it for the picture on #3 alone.
Voting has now closed in the NYC BigApps Challenge, a $20,000 contest to produce amusing, interesting, or even useful apps using the information in the NYC DataMine. Browse the eligible submissions here. Some highlights: Taxihack: collects e-mailed and tweeted comments on NYC cabs, by medallion or license number. Clean.ly: Did the restaurant across the street pass its last health inspection? Walkshed: You tell Walkshed what kind of amenities you'd like to be within walking distance of, and the app makes you a heat map showing your most walkable neighborhoods. SmartPark: Locates nearby garages and collects social information about available street parking. Buzzes you when it's time to move your car. Trees Near You: Does what it says on the box. (via Indirect Collaboration.)
In 1940s New York, Harry Dubin and his teenage son went out every weekend to take color pictures of people doing different jobs in the city. Well, not people...Harry Dubin, switching places with people and pretending to do their jobs. [more inside]
The Jazz Loft Project - From 1957 to 1965, celebrated photojournalist W. Eugene Smith made 4,000 hours of surreptitious recordings and took 40,000 photographs in a loft in Manhattan's wholesale flower district where Roland Kirk, Thelonius Monk, Hall Overton, Charles Mingus and other jazz greats jammed until dawn. Archived in the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, the project is now accessible via a book, a traveling exhibit, a 10-part Jazz Loft series on WNYC, NPR's Jazz Loft Project Sights & Sounds, and an interview with JLP author Sam Stephenson, which includes some images from the book. Via a Grain Edit post, which also has some great images. [more inside]
This Saturday in New York City, a couple hundred people gathered to coat their gullets with thick, rich Christmas Joy, in the Eighth Annual Coquito Masters Contest. Interested in trying a Coquito (aka Puerto Rico's version of egg nog)? Here's some recipes! LET'S GET CREAMY!
Rock band reunions normally involve, at minimum, a little live music. But as The Velvet Underground are not your typical rock band, maybe none of us should have been surprised that the reunion of The Velvets at LIVE from the NYPL on Tuesday December 8th had none.
The New York City Open Accessible Space Information System Cooperative (OASIS) is an online, interactive mapping and data analysis application that gives an incredibly detailed view of New York City's open spaces and how they are used. The map enables overlays of information like: transit; parks, playgrounds and open space; zoning and landmarks; current and historical land use; social services; demographics; and environmental characteristics.(via The Ministry of Type, who like OASIS mainly for its pretty map possibilities.) [more inside]
Cheng Chui Ping came to the US like many others from the Fujian province in China. Through hard work and determination, she rose in the ranks of New York City's Chinatown business community. But, "Sister Ping" was not one to follow laws if it didn't suit her. Among the snakeheads who engaged in human trafficking, none were better than her. [more inside]
Four letters of complaint written to the Mayor of NYC. Excerpted from a book.
A year and a half ago, Henry Chung was an assistant vice president at Merrill Lynch. Now he's an NYPD patrol officer.
History of a New York Block. A nearly complete record of the life cycle of Eldridge St between Stanton/Rivington. Click on the buildings for details. [more inside]
Underground Signs is a company in Brooklyn creating customized NYC subway signs. Other products have horned in on the distinctive look of the MTA's designs, including the map, the train line logos, and the neighborhoods serviced. But this is the first I've seen of the option to create a replica from the NYC underground with one's own name, street, etc. (the site allows you to generate a"Create Your Own" image). [more inside]
One of the best parts of watching Mad Men is the perfectly recreated world of 1960s New York. Who doesn’t wish they could simply step into their tvs for a moment and experience the romance of sipping a cocktail in an elegant 60s bar? Guest of a Guest put together a list of Mad Men inspired locales, consisting of places that have been around since the 1960s as well as their modern counterparts. Here’s everything you need to know to dress, drink, eat, and live like a character out of Mad Men.
The New York Review of Ideas is a web magazine reporting about New York commerce, literature and politics. The Manzine is actually £2 for the print version, but some of the its best is also online.
Park(ing) Day NYC is a one day event of taking over automobile parking spots throughout NYC and converting them into miniature parks, bicycle parking, art installations and performance areas. "These small, temporary public spaces provide a breath of relief from the auto-clogged reality of New York City, and aim to spark dialogue about our valuable public space and how we choose to use it." Plan your day with this map of Park(ing) locations and schedule of events.
Jim Carroll has died. Avant-garde writer, punk rocker, doped-up downtown scenester, never-made-it schoolyard hoop-dreamer. He couldn't have expected to live to see a master's thesis in English at San Diego State written about his journal/novel The Basketball Diaries, or to be interviewed by Jon Stewart about being played by Leo DiCaprio in the movie of his (early) life. [more inside]
Join a young Jools Holland and Leslie Ash for a night out in NYC in the early 80's. Clubs visited include Danceteria, The Roxy (with Bambaata spinning) and Paradise Garage. Acts featured include Quando Quango, New Order and the Peech Boys. (SLYT)
One in 8 Million "New York is a city of characters. On the subway and in its streets, from the intensity of Midtown to the intimacy of neighborhood blocks, is a 305-square-mile parade of people with something to say. This is a collection of a few of their passions and problems, relationships and routines, vocations and obsessions. A new story will be added weekly." A photo and audio series from the New York Times. [more inside]
Potbellies: the fashion must-have hipster accoutrement for the summer, according to the NYTimes. Rebuttal from Flavorwire. via reddit
"A mental and visual release for New Yorkers, who may find it exhausting to live in the most identifiable city in the world."
The Last Parcels of Nowhere Remaining in Manhattan. Photographs. [more inside]
The Unnamed Streets of Crown Heights. Another scintillating journey through NYC's back alleys with the movie scout from Scouting NY.
"Even though my glory years of competitive spelling are long past, some things stay with a person. As I explore, I can't help but notice signs which contain spelling errors. I capture them for posterity with my handy digital camera and present them here for our collective education and entertainment." Thirty-two pages of misspelled signs in the New York metropolitan area -- each one lovingly annotated.
Dorian Corey was the articulate elder stateswoman of the New York City ball scene featured in the 1990 documentary Paris is Burning. When she died in 1993, police found the body of a murdered man 15 years mummified in her apartment. [more inside]
The National Coalition for the Homeless announces that anti-homeless attacks are up, while Maryland becomes the first state to expand hate crimes legislation to include attacks on the homeless. [more inside]
NYC Grid is a photo blog dedicated to exploring and discovering The City of New York block by block and corner by corner. Updated every weekday, each post covers a new block with a focus on the mundane and ephemeral. An optimistic snapshot of New York as it is now. [more inside]
Herb & Dorothy Vogel is a documentary about a postal clerk and a librarian who amassed over 4000 works of conceptual and minimalist art on their modest income. Their only criteria: it had to be affordable, and it had to fit in their apartment.
Hello, New York! New York, wake up you f*ckers! Free Music! Free Love! In 1968, two years before those other guys, Jefferson Airplane played their apocalyptic psychedelia from a NYC rooftop, before police shut them down. Filmed (staged?) by Jean-Luc Godard. [more inside]
The Manhattan Airport Foundation. From the About Us: It doesn’t take long to realize Central Park squanders 843 acres of the most valuable real estate in the world. From the FAQ: To date, nearly 100 investors have signed on to provide approximately $130M in equity with another $80M from the bond market making Manhattan Airport the most ambitious privately-funded airport development project in US history. Apparently this is for reals.
Murder: New York City. A map pinpointing murders in the five boroughs of NYC from 2003-09. Broken down by time of day, weapon used, age, sex and ethnicity of both victim and perpetrator. Not surprisingly, in the heat of summer the body count rises. [more inside]
Tim Hortons, the perennially popular Canadian donut chain, is coming to New York, taking over 13 Dunkin Donuts locations in what some are calling the Doughnut Wars. There seems to be some controversy over the precise reason for the change. Want to know where to get a Double Double in the Big Apple? There's a Google Map! And, Monday morning, FREE COFFEE.
In the heart of Greenwich Village, New York City at 1:20 a.m. on Saturday, June 28, 1969 eight New York City police raided a gay bar, the Stonewall Inn (later deemed a National Historic Landmark). "As the police raided the bar, a crowd of four hundred patrons gathered on the street outside and watched the officers arrest the bartender, the doorman, and a few drag queens [see: police arrest reports]. The crowd, which eventually grew to an estimated 2,000 strong, was fed up."* Thus began three days of rioting and the advent of the modern gay rights movement. In honor of the Stonewall Riots, many gay pride celebrations around the world are held during the month of June, including this week(end)'s NYC Pride, celebrating 40 years of Stonewall's impact on seeking to bring civil rights to all, including the LGBT community. Happy Pride! [more inside]
The first stage of New York City's High Line redesign was opened to the public yesterday, and reviews are generally favorable. The city's newest park (whose concept is similar to Paris’s Promenade Plantée,) transforms an abandoned, above-ground, elevated freight train track into a nine block "lofty expanse of walking and green spaces that stretches 60 feet wide in some spots". It also provides visitors with a unique look at some of the city's architecture and layout. (Previously on MeFi) [more inside]
In what has been described as "the American Idol of education" and "a biosphere of educational reform," The Equity Project Charter School will open in NYC this fall, offering $125,000 salaries to a "dream team" of teachers to test the theory that better teacher quality is the key to a better education for students.
Have you ever wondered what New York was like before it was a city? Find out at The Mannahatta Project, by navigating through the map to discover Manhattan Island and its native wildlife in 1609. [more inside]
A creative New York couple and their wonderful, vintage photographs: pioneering filmmaker, Morris Engel, and award-winning photojournalist, Ruth Orkin, who is renowned for her iconic American Girl in Italy. [more inside]
Urban Omnibus is an online project of the Architectural League that explores the relationship between design and New York City's physical environment. They are featuring Making Policy Public, a program of The Center for Urban Pedagogy, through their articles about Vendor Power and Predatory Equity. [more inside]