Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, The Word On The Street
Taken August 5, 2014.
Taken by Pexy.
Filed under: 11211, 11222, 11249, Bushwick, Bushwick Brooklyn, East Williamsburg, East Williamsburg Brooklyn, Gentrification, Gowanus, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, Maspeth, Maspeth Queens, Williamsburg, Williamsburg Brooklyn
This tome was brought to my attention by a fellow named Richard. Richard is a resident of Lawrence, Kansas. This Letter to the Powers That Be, not surprisingly, pertains to matters in Lawrence, Kansas. However, while reading this tome more than one community hereabouts— and the non/not-for-profit organizations (which purport to act as a “voice”/”advocate” for the aforementioned communities) came to mind. I do not think I need to list/name the previous here, gentle readers. We know them.*
Follows is an excerpt from this essay so as the pique your interest:
…I have been long in forming my opinion of the Cultural Arts District and the 9th Street Corridor. When the pros and cons of the issue are laid across a scale, I find myself on the side of favor. I am in support of the Cultural Arts District and 9th Street Corridor in East Lawrence. I am excited at the prospect of renewal and repair that the Cultural District designation dollars can bring. I want new sidewalks and safer lighting and renovated limestone curbs and bricks in my streets. I want the businesses in my neighborhood to thrive and prosper and have the funds to reinvest in my community. I want an economic base that can support an East Lawrence or Downtown grocery store. I want my daughters to grow up in a vibrant, thriving neighborhood that supports the arts and creativity. I am personally invested in positive outcomes for the Cultural Arts District.
There remains a sense of unease when I think about what will happen as the Cultural Arts District and 9th Street Corridor develop. I cannot shake the feeling of anxiety, of foreboding, of “ick” in my belly and bad smell wrinkle in my nose. And this time, it isn’t a downdraft from the wastewater treatment plant (Emphasis mine— Ed. Note) or the river. It’s the aftertaste of cultural co-option. But what does that mean, you say? I can’t explain it to you without the help of Alice Walker. Here’s where the story comes in…
*Hence why I found this excerpt of Adam “GWAPP Advisory Board” Perlmutter’s biography so fascinating:
…Adam is a currently lawyer for Develop Don’t Destroy Brooklyn opposing the Atlantic Yards project …
Speaking as a resident of Greenpoint for fourteen years now who knows quite a few bloggers— bloggers who have taken a keen interest in Atlantic Yards, no less— I have not once heard his name mentioned. What’s more, someone closely connected with DDDB confirmed my suspicions:
He isn’t in the employ and never was. He volunteered with DDDB about 9 years ago and helped them find their great lawyer Matt Brinckerhoff - but he’s not done anything with them for about 7 years.
Note the “Treasurer”. It is none other than Steve “Brooklyn Beer/I loves me some Atlantic Yards” Hindy himself.
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, The Word On The Street
Taken August 3, 2014.
It would appear that as of
yesterday August 1st the Jungle Cafe has opened its doors for business! I hope the food is as good as the lovely job they did overhauling this long-neglected space. I suppose we’ll find out soon enough…
You can view their menu online by clicking here. Closing on a (somewhat) related note, Cachaco (which is located across the street at 994 Manhattan Avenue) is finalizing their new menu! You can see the latest draft by clicking here.
Photo Credits: autovac
Taken by gothamruins.
Filed under: 11222, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, Urban Artifact
Looks like Jailbear is taking the imminent closure of Lulu’s pretty hard. Or perhaps he is celebrating? Anyone out there know if teddy bears like pizza? Sorry folks, I have a very hard time feeling sorry for a business owner who:
- Didn’t seem to have an issue with the anti-gay clause in his lease— for a decade— until it became convenient to do so.
- Went on the record saying this:
They (gay establishments — Ed. note) do well because you don’t have issues of fighting,” he said. “They’re nice people, they’re wonderful to deal with. It’s easier. Typically you don’t have to offer food.
So apparently gay people do not eat or fight. Just goes to show you learn something new every day. Did I mention that watering holes in our fair city are required by law to offer food? Well, I just did.
UPDATE, 6:03 p.m.: It would appear that the owner of Lulu’s has been trying to sell this establishment for some time. An anonymous tipster writes:
(He) tried to sell me that place 3 years ago. Crying the blues about not making money etc. I was actually interested UNTIL I toured the space. SHIT HOLE ….literally! At that time the toilets were flushing INTO the basement! Exposed wires, bad plumbing, mold, rotting floors and walls. WAAAAAAAY too much work to bring the place up to code, so I declined.
So there you go.
this adorable floppy eared fellow (?)! As you can see no location has been provided as to where this handsome hare was found. However, I observed the fliers were concentrated around Meserole Avenue, Calyer, Franklin and Banker Street, so this may be some indication. I have contacted this good Samaritan to thank him for being this bunny’s guardian angel and request more details as to what happened. We’ll see. In the meantime, if you know to whom this furry one belongs please contact the above-listed email address. Thanks!
UPDATE, 8:53 p.m.: I got a response— and it is awesome!
Hey there. haven’t heard anything from his owner as of yet and every vet/pet store i’ve spoken to has told me he was probably abandoned so that sucks. He loves to be pet and is super sweet so was definitely a pet at one point…i can’t imagine how you could just abandon your pet like that. Lame! But…guess it just means I have a cute, sweet, adorable new pet, so there’s an upside. : )
Backstory? I had just gone to brunch with an old coworker at Dirk the Norsman and was walking back on N15 when i saw some rustling in the garbage by the music studios over there. I assumed it was a giant rat until I got closer and noticed it was a little bunny…not your average sight on n15. He let me pick him up right away and was super skinny so ya know, he had me at ‘dirty and covered with garbage’.
Filed under: 11222, Fuck This Shit, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic
Or: Breakin’ The Law!
Yesterday morning I had this article (which is screencapped at left) brought to my attention by my comrade over at Queens Crap. I pointed and clicked my way over to Brownstoner. This is what they elected to say about 173 Green Street:
An unusually shaped building designed by architect Natalia Donskoy is going up at 173 Green Street in Greenpoint. The front of the building is not straight across but angles in four directions.
The Alt-1 permit calls for four stories and seven units. Donskoy, a former employee of Robert Scarano, is becoming known for sometimes mold-breaking designs in North Brooklyn. What do you think of the design?
This, their post, left me absolutely flummoxed for a number of reasons. Follows are two:
1. Although it is clearly discernable in the second photo they elected to publish, no mention whatsoever is made of the Stop Work Orders. Yes, this property has not one— but two.
2. As it would happen I reside in the general area. I have seen the shitshow that is 173 Green unfold. A number of my neighbors/buddies have as well. Aesthetic considerations aside, we all agree on one thing:
These Stop Work Orders issued were well-deserved.
Speaking for myself, the first sign that 173 Green may be a less-than-professional operation was when they commenced
demolishing modifying the original structure which graced this lot.
You can get an indication of what it was in the above photograph: it is a vestige of a one story extension of 1020 Manhattan Avenue.
This extension sported two storefronts and a (questionably legal) studio apartment. I know this because I know the fellow who called it his home. Then the building sold and out he went.
Anyway, with him went this rather charming Polish travel agency. It was operated by two brothers: twins who not infrequently wore matching outfits. For wont of a better way of putting it, it was vaguely reminiscent of something one would see in a David Lynch movie. But of course this was real life and that is what made Seweryn even more awesome— but I digress. Let’s get back to what I saw which gave me the impression that something may be amiss at 173 Green.
One morning I walked by and beheld three – four men wielding sledgehammers. These they used to break down cinder block walls. The rubble which resulted was taken, on foot/in hand, and dumped into a truck which was idling across the street. Speaking as someone who has resided in north Brooklyn for fourteen years (and blogged about it for over eight) I have seen more than my fair share of questionably professional “construction”. Bearing this in mind, I feel compelled to note this may well have been the worst. In any case it is certainly in the top three— and given what I have seen I can attest they come out on top of some mighty stiff competition. This is no small accomplishment.
But why take my word for it? Let’s consult the professionals: the Department of Buildings!
Surely they must have something to say about 173 Green Street since they have seen fit to post not one— but two Stop Work Orders? It has been my observation this is reserved for the most select of scofflaws.
- eleven complaints
- three DOB violations
- fourteen ECB violations
- civil penalties due and
- violating of a Stop Work Order
That’s pretty impressive. Let’s keep digging, shall we?
A $5,000 fine. Hilarious. Let’s plow on!
So help me, I think I am beginning to see a pattern here.
Wow, this was less than two weeks ago! In any case, it would appear that the powers that be behind 173 Green Street harbor apathy— if not total and utter contempt— for the law.
I for one find this rather ironic given who the architect is for this project. Once again (from Brownstoner):
…Donskoy, a former employee of Robert Scarano…
That name, Robert Scarano, sounds familiar. Oh wait now I remember!
It was his “Scarano Special” which straddles Tommy’s Tavern (addresses 1037 Manhattan Avenue and 158 Freeman respectively) which resulted in Mr. Scarano being banned from filing plans in our fair city! You see, he decided to fudge with the facts a bit. He stated 1037 Manhattan Avenue and 158 Freeman Street were one contiguous lot. He did so in order to build taller than what is legally permissible. Whoops. And now the punchline…
This masterpiece of the ethically-challenged is a mere block away from 173 Green Street! This begs the question (in my mind, anyway) if his protege is following in his (rather dubious) footsteps. By all appearances, this would appear to be the case. But it is time to wrap this up— and answer the question:
What do you think of the design?
After I got done taking the photographs which grace this post, I bumped into a friend of mine who happens to live on the same block as 173 Green Street. A neighbor, if you will. A neighbor who informed me that he/she has in fact lodged a number of complaints about 173 Green Street. Among the things this person has observed:
- Construction in violation of a Stop Work Order— at 6:00 on Sunday morning.
- Violation of Stop Work Orders has been the modus operandi at 173 Green Street. One time even the police showed up.
- The adjacent Green Oaks Club property was inadvertently (?) divested of some of its aluminum siding. Those of you who know this community’s affection for the aforementioned product understand that this is probably a hanging offense.
- The use of step ladders for workers to get from floor to floor. What would OSHA say about this?
- And a litany of other offenses which generally make people upset and call 311.
Once this person was done giving me the 411, I told him/her that Brownstoner published an article about 173 Green Street yesterday— and the question they were posing was whether or not folks liked the design. Before I tender his/her answer, I will tender my own verdict:
Of course it will be ugly. That is the Greenpoint way!
And now— with no further ado— the most apropos answer: that of someone who calls 173 Green Street a neighbor. It went (more or less) as follows:
Are you fucking kidding me?
UPDATE, August 1st 2014: Thanks to Queens Crap linking back to this tome we have some very interesting advice/analysis from a commenter:
diggin your cross promotion here crappy.
lets start at the top:
#1, it’s four floors and a mezz, the half floor above the 2nd is clearly a mezz.
#2, concrete enforcement is on it. those guys don’t screw around and they’ve got a direct line to the borough commissioner and people with serious leverage.
#3, CEU is under the umbrella of tim lynch, the mythical god of DOB who will not stand to see the city get embarrassed. he will go there and put a fence up himself if he has to, because he’s a little crazy, but he is not someone you want to see on a job site, ever.
#4, DOB can and will post a vacate on the building, which would subject any violators and the developer to major civil and CRIMINAL penalties. FDNY and NYPD are bound by these, and these things happen.
#4, if they violate the SWO, in addition to $5k per violation, the city will generally walk around and ticket every loose guardrail, every missing screw from the job, every person not in a harness, everything. all of it. write that check for $15k to the city of NY please.
#5, the developer will never get a CO unless all these fines are paid. they’ve got a roughly $20k tab right now.
so what do you do? keep calling 311.
BIS listed a phone number for concrete enforcement in one of the complaints — 212-393-2730. it’s a cell phone, but you’ll get someone who knows the site and what’s going on. but be aware, many in CEU are very intimidating and they WILL ask how you got the number. it’s on BIS.
Filed under: 11222, Crosstown Local, GENIUS, Greenpoint, Greenpoint Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, Stuff That Makes Miss Heather Happy
If there is one thing I have observed in my years living in the Garden Spot, it is this; its citizens are thoughtful and often quite resourceful. As the neighborhood has “changed” this has diminished somewhat— but as the above photo attests some of that “community spirit” persists. We you have just looked at, gentle readers, is an ad hoc piece of shuttle bus seating installed on the western side McGuinness Boulevard just a hop skip from Kent Street.
The selection of chair is welcoming, even downright cheerful. Just want a tired commuter would want to see while negotiating our mass transit system, In terms of style (if not capacity), it far surpassses its kindred in Long Island City. But would I expect anything less of our fair burgh? Of course not! Last but hardly least —the piece de resistance, if you will— is additional measure taken so as to discourage theft.
This is, naturally, a coordinating/”re-purposed” red brassiere. I give this arrangement two enthusiastic New York Shitty thumbs up. Bravo!