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  #21  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2007, 4:10 PM
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^ You didn't include the eye-porn:

Current East River look.


Rendering of possible East River plans.



As a "vision" exercise, they lacked no expense. Why tease people when the expense of this vision is beyond practicality and couldn't be built near any reasonable cost? Already estimated at a couple hundred millions of dollars, the costs of this dream will only escalate. Richard Rodgers should be invited to submit his recommendations, since he is designing the East River esplanade to the south, as well as some of the waterfront in LIC as part of his Silvercup towers. (This vision is a red herring in vain hopes of killing Solow's Con Ed development.)

Last edited by fioco; Jun 11, 2007 at 4:25 PM.
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  #22  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2007, 6:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fioco
As a "vision" exercise, they lacked no expense. Why tease people when the expense of this vision is beyond practicality and couldn't be built near any reasonable cost? Already estimated at a couple hundred millions of dollars, the costs of this dream will only escalate. Richard Rodgers should be invited to submit his recommendations, since he is designing the East River esplanade to the south, as well as some of the waterfront in LIC as part of his Silvercup towers. (This vision is a red herring in vain hopes of killing Solow's Con Ed development.)
Hmm, I didn't think cost concerns were really an issue in Manhattan... when you're home to 20 million in the metro area and the only city in the nation that knows how to build a subway, a couple hundred million isn't that much.

The park above is a bit reminiscent of the $85 million sculpture park in Seattle, opened recently that bridges Belltown over an active railway and highway to the waterfront... the real-estate along the riverfront that will be developed for this (East River access) will likely be worth FAR more money than the park will cost, so just do a little TIF funding, and boom! You're done.

Either that or get a few private donors like Seattle did.
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  #23  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2007, 6:33 PM
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^ Your comments are greatly appreciated, but you miss the point. The "park" is proposed for land already owned and cleared by the developer Solow. If the park proceeds according to plan, Solow pays for it and doesn't have the land to develop, land that is already zoned for tall buildings. The situation is very different from Seattle, where that fabulous park greatly increased nearby property values. This is Solow's property, not public property except for the ventilation tower for the Midtown Tunnel and the very small asphalt parcel known lovingly as Robert Moses Park. By the way, your home might make a lovely park. You should tear it down and build something nice for your community.
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  #24  
Old Posted Jun 11, 2007, 8:13 PM
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Originally Posted by fioco View Post
^ You didn't include the eye-porn:

Current East River look.


Rendering of possible East River plans.


The renderings are from a different article. The city may be leaning towards building the waterfront esplanade, though it may be in a different form than what is shown here. As far as Solow goes, his plan has already been altered to give the NIMBYs more space on site.
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  #25  
Old Posted Jun 27, 2007, 1:07 PM
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http://www.nysun.com/article/57360

Floating Public Pool To Open on East River



The Floating Pool under construction at a Brooklyn pier near Brooklyn Heights.

By ERIN DURKIN
June 27, 2007

Starting next week, New Yorkers looking to escape the heat will have a new option — a pool floating on the East River.

The Floating Pool at Brooklyn Bridge Park Beach will open July 4 on a barge moored between Piers 4 and 5 on the Brooklyn waterfront. It will be open to the public, free of charge, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week through Labor Day. A free shuttle bus will carry swimmers from surrounding neighborhoods.

The 25-meter, seven-lane pool can fit 174 people. On the barge's steel decks is a spray pool for children. Translucent murals depict the history of marine life on the New York waterfront.


The pool is docked at a 43,000-square-foot "beach," a parking lot transformed by sand brought in from Red Hook. " Brooklyn's trying to give Paris a run for its money," the president of the Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy, Marianna Koval, said, referring to similar pools on the Seine.

"To take a swimming lesson in the shadow of the Statue of Liberty, it's pretty incredible," she said, noting that the pool's opening would mark the first time in 200 years that residents could access the previously industrial area for recreation.

The floating pool is the brainchild of Ann Buttenwieser, an urban planner who described herself as "a big proponent of opening the waterfront for recreation."

"When I started this," some 20 years ago, Ms. Buttenwieser said, "there was nothing on the waterfront. We didn't have Hudson River Park. We didn't have Brooklyn Bridge Park."

The Neptune Foundation, a nonprofit organization Ms. Buttenwieser founded to pursue the project, bought a decommissioned cargo barge in Louisiana in 2004. Construction on the Floating Pool was delayed for five months by Hurricane Katrina, but it was ready for its 10-day voyage to New York by October 2006.

After hitting a storm off Cape Hatteras, N.C., Ms. Buttenwieser said, "the pool arrived with a lot of water in it." For the past seven months, it has been anchored at nearby Pier 2 as finishing touches were added.

"It's unique. It's something new. There is just something wonderful about being in the water in the water," Ms. Buttenwieser said.

Though the pool will be a novelty to today's swimmers, it is not unique in the city's history. According to Ms. Buttenwieser's research, at the turn of the 20th century there were 15 riverside pools. People often stood in line for hours for a chance at 20 minutes in the packed pools, which had separate days for men — who generally swam nude — and women, she said.

But unlike today's Floating Pool, which has filtered water, they were filled with river water and gradually abandoned after it became clear they were contaminated with sewage.

" Manhattan Island is surrounded by water, and yet people can't swim in it," the CEO of American Leisure, which will manage the pool, Steve Kass, said. The pool is offering the next best thing, he said, and will host activities ranging from swimming lessons to beach volleyball games.

After spending this summer in Brooklyn, the pool is expected to be moored at communities around the city in the future, perhaps visiting the South Bronx for 2008.
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  #26  
Old Posted Jun 27, 2007, 5:38 PM
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awesome. now if they towed the pool around Manhattan, it would be the coolest thing in the world
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  #27  
Old Posted Jun 29, 2007, 1:53 PM
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http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories...atingpool.html

Everybody in the barge

By Dana Rubinstein
June 30 – July 7, 2007



The floating pool — with faux beach — along the Brooklyn Heights waterfront.


The floating pool will finally open for swimming, soaking, and general relief-seeking on July 4, sources told The Brooklyn Paper.

The barge-borne pool is the dream of Ann Buttenwieser, the urban planner who concocted the idea for the so-called “Floating Pool Lady” nearly three decades ago and raised funding for it through her Neptune Foundation.

That barge is now anchored at the foot of Joralemon Street, a mere eight blocks from Borough Hall.

The splashy news was as welcome as a sprinkler on a steamy summer day.

“We’ve been looking forward to it,” said Judy Stanton, executive director of the Brooklyn Heights Association. “We hope that people enjoy it, and that it doesn’t become a noise issue.”

On the shoreline will be one-acre, man-made beach, where visitors will be able to rent umbrellas, chairs, and munch on Schnack hot dogs. The pool will be able to hold 174 swimmers at a time, with another 226 on the platform.

If all goes swimmingly, the pool will be open every day from Independence Day through Labor Day, from 11 am to 7 pm. And like all city pools, admission is free.

©2007 The Brooklyn Paper
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  #28  
Old Posted Jun 30, 2007, 11:09 AM
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http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/30/ny...on&oref=slogin

Brooklyn, Your New Floating Swimming Pool Is Almost Ready Now



Jonathan Kirschenfeld, the architect of the pool in a barge, was helping with construction details on Thursday. Public opening is set for next week.


By ETHAN WILENSKY-LANFORD
June 30, 2007

The barge was a buzz of activity. Crews were halfway done with a half-dozen projects. Siding was being put on locker rooms. A checkerboard of paving tiles was being laid out on the deck. Metal panels still had to be hung from the railings. In the center of it all, a large aquamarine pool glimmered, tantalizing everybody on board.

“I want to jump in that pool right now,” said Tommy Farrell, 39, a construction worker from Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, whose face was red and sweaty in Thursday’s midmorning heat.

He won’t have to wait much longer. On Wednesday, Independence Day, if all goes well, a dream born over a quarter century ago, a floating pool built on a barge, will finally be ready for bathers and bobbing off the Brooklyn waterfront in Brooklyn Heights. Eventually, the site will be part of Brooklyn Bridge Park.

The pool is 25 meters long, or just over 82 feet, is 4 feet deep and has 7 lanes. Admission will be limited to 175 and will be free.


The Floating Pool Lady, as it is called, has not been easy or cheap to put together.

The idea for the barge was conceived in the early 1980s by Ann L. Buttenwieser, a former parks department official, who was attracted to the notion of floating pools by studying the history of New York. She found that there were once dozens of bathhouses on the water, used more for sanitation than for recreation.

Ms. Buttenwieser started a nonprofit group, the Neptune Foundation, to finance her pool project. So far, it has spent $4 million in donations and Ms. Buttenwieser has spent $1 million in borrowed money to pay for the pool.

Ms. Buttenwieser said that when she approached the parks commissioner, Henry Stern, in 1999 or 2000, he told her he was interested in helping her but could not afford the pool’s upkeep. The city did give her an old garbage barge, but it sank. The mayor of Hoboken, N.J., said his city wanted a pool, but he left office. So Ms. Buttenwieser and her team looked south, and in 2004 bought a decommissioned cargo barge in Louisiana called the New Orleans. In a bit of good luck, Hurricane Katrina did not damage the 85-by-300-foot vessel, but it did delay the first stages of conversion.

The barge with its pool-shaped hole arrived in Brooklyn last fall, where governmental hurdles were added to the remaining construction challenges and even threatened to sink the project. A big question, Ms. Buttenwieser said, was whether the barge was a building or a ship.

“There are multiple layers of jurisdiction here, because nobody knows what it is,” she said. “Is it a structure, or is it a vessel? Does the Coast Guard need to be involved?”


Ms. Buttenwieser said it took seven licenses and agreements to get the project approved. And yes, the Floating Pool Lady may be the first swimming pool that required a sign-off from the Coast Guard.

Once the barge was docked off Brooklyn Heights, a new round of work began. The earlier work done in Louisiana was rough shipbuilding; now that had to be made to work with precision blueprints for the pool.

“When you take something built in a shipyard and you add an architect on top of that,” said Steven Spivak, a construction supervisor, “what you get is a rigid world landing on a slightly irregular world.”

He and the pool’s architect, Jonathan Kirschenfeld, had just discovered one problem: 400 short aluminum cylinders, needed to install metal panels evenly around the edge of the barge, were a fraction of an inch too long.

That was one reason why getting the Floating Pool Lady ready for its debut was going to be a close call.

Despite the remaining hard work, some of the few people who have seen the pool up close are enthusiastic about the project. One of the construction workers, Alfred G. Baker, from Canarsie, Brooklyn, was thrilled that he could take his three children on a New York outing that would not cost him anything.

“Even my little daughter’s going to be excited about it,” he said. “When it’s time to go, she’s going to say, ‘Oh, Daddy, no! Can I spend a little more time?’ “

A shuttle will be available to take people to the pool, with stops at Cadman Plaza and Borough Hall and in Brooklyn Heights. And shiny gangways will reach from shore to barge. There are locker rooms. The pathways to the pool from the locker rooms pass large translucent seascape murals. Next comes a spray-pad, where children can get wet without swimming, and a sitting area for adults. Lifeguards will watch over the swimmers, and in the background is the Manhattan skyline, a view all can behold.
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  #29  
Old Posted Jul 6, 2007, 9:12 PM
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curbed.com (via mcbrooklyn.blogspot.com)





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Floating Pool Update: Tilted Barge, Pool Closed For Now



July 5, 2007

The Floating Pool opened at Brooklyn Bridge Park yesterday to visitors (a "decent sized" crowd showed up) . However, there are some lingering issues, thanks to yesterday's rainy weather. Reader Drew went to visit the pool today and wrote to us:

Unfortunately, after being open only one day to the public, it was closed. The director, a very nice woman, explained that the rain from yesterday flooded some of the ballast tanks and tilted the entire barge. So basically one end of the pool had 2 feet of water, and the other end was overflowing. They did let some of the public on the barge to check it out and take some pictures, but the pool is closed all day while engineers attempt to fix the problem. We'll see if this gets resolved by tomorrow.

He also included this photograph - you can see the tilt if you look at the level of the pool in the photograph. If they can put a man on the moon, then we're sure engineers can fix the problem.
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  #30  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2007, 5:55 PM
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  #31  
Old Posted Jul 13, 2007, 5:56 PM
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http://archrecord.construction.com/n.../070709fdr.asp

Is Kahn’s FDR Memorial Back on Track?



Shortly before his death, Louis I. Kahn designed a memorial to Franklin D. Roosevelt that occupies 2.8 acres at the southern tip of Roosevelt Island in New York City’s East River. Work on the project began during the 1980s but was halted by budget problems.
Rendering by Christopher Shelley, photo by Amiaga, courtesy the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute




The FDR Memorial will culminate in a granite-walled room that will feature views of the United Nations—an organization the president helped create. The site has already been graded and shaped; it only requires the granite blocks to be laid.
Photo: © James Murdock




Kahn’s 1973 sketch of the memorial.
Rendering: © University of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission / Louis I. Kahn Collection



July 9, 2007
by James Murdock

It doesn’t take much to envision what Louis I. Kahn’s memorial to Franklin D. Roosevelt will look like if it is eventually finished. It occupies a triangular, 2.8-acre site at the southern tip of Roosevelt Island in New York City’s East River. Construction crews have already shaped the earth into the exact dimensions and contours that Kahn specified in 1973: a raised lawn, to be flanked by two groves of trees and granite steps, that gently slopes down and culminates in an open-air, granite-walled room overlooking the United Nations.

These walls will bear quotes from the president’s powerful Four Freedoms speech.

“Most of the memorial is already there,” says Gina Pollara, executive director of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial—Four Freedoms Park project of the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute (FERI). “We only need to plant the trees and lay the granite blocks.”


Easy as that sounds, there is still the challenging matter of finding money to make it happen—something that FERI has struggled with since proposing a memorial in the 1960s. But the project just received a big boost. In June, it earned a letter of support from New York’s new governor, Eliot Spitzer. FERI also received an anonymous $2.5 million donation, helping jump-start fund-raising efforts on a $40 million capital campaign.

These developments are the first in a dozen years. Although Mitchell/Giurgola Architects prepared construction documents following Kahn’s death in 1974, the state and city’s legendary budget crisis sidelined the project. Construction finally began during the 1980s—until money problems, coupled with a change of governors, once again stalled it. Great monuments often take years to complete, but Pollara is now feeling pressure from a competing scheme pegged for the same site.

The Roosevelt Memorial occupies an overgrown area known as Southpoint, which also includes the ruined Smallpox Hospital, designed by James Renwick in 1854. It is the last substantial open space on the island—neé Blackwell’s Island, then Welfare Island—which the state has redeveloped according to Philip Johnson and John Burgee’s 1969 master plan. At the request of then-governor George Pataki, the Trust for Public Land began reenvisioning Southpoint in 2003. It engaged Mark K. Morrison Associates, which, with input from island residents, created a plan titled “Wild Gardens/ Green Rooms.” It calls for stabilizing the Renwick ruins and maintaining Southpoint’s feral quality with pocket-sized forests and lawns. Absent is a Roosevelt memorial.

A team led by WRT Planning & Design is now preparing construction documents for the scheme’s $10 million first phase, which encompasses roughly 8 acres from the Renwick ruins north. Andy Stone, director of the trust’s New York program, expects to break ground by summer 2008. He says that decisions regarding the remaining portion of Southpoint will depend on fund-raising—and the Roosevelt Memorial’s fate.

Although Pollara is energized by her recent successes, this optimism is tempered with pragmatism. Relying purely on state support again would be a mistake, she says. But if FERI is unable to raise a substantial chunk of money from private sources within a year, the memorial will likely remain unbuilt—which Pollara says would be a shame. “Roosevelt Island was renamed because the memorial was going to be put there. Many people today don’t even know who Roosevelt was, but his definitions of freedom are more important than ever.”
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  #32  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2007, 10:16 AM
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Never having been to Roosevelt Island beyond the tramway's terminal, don't know what the south tip looks like. But the FDR-memorial looks elegant and like a nice placer to be. Having it instead be fake wilderness... no.

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They did let some of the public on the barge to check it out and take some pictures,
Just that little thing is so smart. Letting "the people" see and document that the pool really was messed up and had to be closed.
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  #33  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2007, 2:47 PM
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the southern tip has been closed off to everyone but the ballsiest of trespassers for a couple years now. you cant get to the ruins either
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  #34  
Old Posted Jul 20, 2007, 11:35 AM
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Just that little thing is so smart. Letting "the people" see and document that the pool really was messed up and had to be closed.
It was only closed for that one day I believe.
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Old Posted Jul 20, 2007, 11:37 AM
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http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories...atingpool.html

Pool with a view



July 21, 2007

The Floating Pool Lady barge at the foot of Joralemon Street in Brooklyn Heights is welcoming Brooklynites like Amanda, Rob and Matthew Rowan, to its cool water and skyline view.But the 174-person-capacity pool’s sojourn off the Brooklyn coast is fleeting. After Labor Day, the pool will close; next summer, it may open in the South Bronx, which sought the pool this summer, but lost out to operators of the Brooklyn Bridge Park waterfront development. The state-run project is under pressure to demonstrate that it will be a park first and a luxury condo neighborhood second.
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  #36  
Old Posted Jul 20, 2007, 2:24 PM
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FDR Memorial

There's a cheesy movie with Michael J. Fox called For Love or Money where he wants to renovate one of the old hospital buildings at the tip of the island into a lux hotel. That was 1993 and nothing has happened to the actual site since a fictitious scenario 15 years ago.
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Old Posted Jul 21, 2007, 10:25 AM
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There's a cheesy movie with Michael J. Fox called For Love or Money where he wants to renovate one of the old hospital buildings at the tip of the island into a lux hotel. That was 1993 and nothing has happened to the actual site since a fictitious scenario 15 years ago.
Sounds like a movie I've seen, but I don't remember the details...
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  #38  
Old Posted Jul 21, 2007, 11:10 AM
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View of Manhattan from Roosevelt Island...


roosevelt-island.ny.us


The tram ride over only seems to take about a half a minute, though some people
got stuck up there for hours during an incident last year...


gothamist.com




polisnyc.wordpress.com
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Old Posted Aug 27, 2007, 10:19 PM
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http://www.nytimes.com/2007/08/26/re...te&oref=slogin

Counting on a River to Entice



The Edge, a development in Williamsburg.


By C. J. HUGHES
August 26, 2007

THE East River is still polluted, from sewage runoff and a long-ago oil spill, according to the city’s Department of Environmental Protection, so it is probably not quite fit yet for doing the backstroke.

But that hasn’t altered its role as a selling point for developments springing up along its banks in Brooklyn and Queens, where a recent rezoning has allowed housing to take the place of warehouses.

How popular are developers expecting the waterfront to become? Well, the sheer size of some projects provides an indication.

Take the Edge, a mixed-use development going up in the Northside neighborhood of Williamsburg. It is to span more than two full city blocks, or seven acres, between North Fifth and North Seventh Streets, from Kent Avenue to the river.

Plans call for 1,432 units, with 1,085 condos and 347 rental apartments, spread among five buildings from 8 to 30 stories high
, said Jeffrey E. Levine, the chairman of Queens-based Douglaston Development, the developer. Other partners in the $1.2 billion project include UBS, the investment bank, and Louis Silverman, the former owner of the site, which used to house a trucking business.

A would-be city-in-miniature, the Edge will be crisscrossed by streets lined with 60,000 square feet of retail space. Residents will have access to 34,000 square feet of parks; 27,000 square feet of indoor recreation space, including a spa and a video-game room; and two garages, for 550 cars.

But under the terms of the new zoning, the Edge, like neighboring developments, must also provide parkland for nonresidents, and so 21,000 square feet of the property, mostly on two piers, will be open to the public, Mr. Levine said.

The state attorney general has not yet approved the Edge’s offering plan, but Mr. Levine said prices had already been determined. The smallest studios, about 600 square feet, will cost $600,000, and the largest two-bedrooms, with about 1,075 square feet of space, will run about $1.08 million, he said. Finishes throughout include oak floors, quartz kitchen counters and Miele appliances.

In addition, the city’s 421a tax-abatement law requires 20 percent of the units to be priced for people with lower incomes, so the rental apartments, one- and two-bedrooms, will cost $800 to $1,200 a month, Mr. Levine said, adding that the first round of closings is set for the summer of 2009.

Housing directly on the water “is desirable in other cities like Chicago or Paris,” he said. “There’s no reason it can’t be here.”

Reconnecting people with the East River, especially in a park-starved area, is a noble undertaking, said Roland Lewis, the president of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, which advocates for greater waterfront access.

But, he said, “you have to be careful about what’s promised and what’s delivered.”

Many of Manhattan’s vest-pocket parks, which were often created by builders in exchange for greater development rights, are often poorly maintained or locked, Mr. Lewis said.

“It’s one thing to cheat the public out of a pocket park,” he said, “but it’s another to cheat them out of access to a river.”
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Old Posted Aug 27, 2007, 10:44 PM
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Thought this was funny. Posted on curbed.com

Introducing the Roosevelt Island Tower of Death



We have absolutely no idea where the hell this YouTube video came from, but it might be the finest architectural vision for New York City, and Roosevelt Island in particular, we've ever seen. You must watch it immediately, and this must be built. Make it so.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkLPoUoGZOg
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“Office buildings are our factories – whether for tech, creative or traditional industries we must continue to grow our modern factories to create new jobs,” said United States Senator Chuck Schumer.
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