New York Shitty Manhole Watch: 11/04/2011

You know what they say: everyone needs a hobby. The epidemic of manhole plundering in my fair burgh has become mine. This phenomenon– and the commentary/observations I have received about it— have summoned my inner “Nancy Drew”. Today she and I went out to play. However, we had a plan. It was as follows:

1. Having received a tip that Commercial Street has been divested of its street/sidewalk covers, it would be on the itinerary.

2. Having observed that these thefts appear to be centered in north Greenpoint, a more thorough exploration of this area would be made.

3. Noting that thefts seem to be happening in relatively secluded areas, a trek down West Street was in order.

Follows are my findings. Enjoy!

65 Commercial Street (in front of the Access-A-Ride parking lot)

Commercial Street at Clay Street

Dupont Street, across Barge Park Playground

West Street, between Freeman and Green Street

Java Street at West Street

A triple header!

West At Calyer Street

Total number of manholes plundered: 8.


1. All in all, it was a pretty a disappointing foray (making Juan ‘s acquaintance aside, of course). However—

2. I did notice that the recent paving and milling on Commercial Street (an example of which can be seen to the left) might actually help prevent theft of these covers. If they cannot be seen, they cannot be stolen!

3. Similarly, the rather shoddy condition of West Street has also precluded cover theft. Most were so covered with ages old asphalt they were rendered a like so many flies in amber. Fossils. My prognostication is as follows: when West Street gets its purported makeover (and presuming these covers are refurbished in the process) we’ll see more thefts there.

4. I failed to account for the area covered being a rather popular area for parking. Thus is it very likely I missed a few missing covers. Conclusion: another sortee is in order. Preferably on a weekend.

5. While not a street/sidewalk cover per se I do have to wonder if this item from Eagle Street (as seen to the right) was commandeered for scrap.

6. I simply cannot keep on top of all these manholes by myself. Thus I implore you, gentle readers, to photograph any missing street/sidewalk covers you may encounter and email them to me at: missheather (at) thatgreenpointblog (dot) com. Be sure to note the location in the subject line.

Let us leave no manhole behind, North Brooklynites!









One Comment on New York Shitty Manhole Watch: 11/04/2011

  1. dark and stern « The Newtown Pentacle on Mon, 14th Nov 2011 11:42 am
  2. […] Just the other day, one observed this crow walking down the center median of the Greenpoint Avenue Bridge. For the purposes of nomenclature, we’ll refer to him as the Grey Crow. Even by the standards of their kind, this particular Crow seemed seedy and more than a little “off”. For those of you new to the ongoing story of the Crows- if a piece of metal, or a mattress, or anything shiny- finds its way to the sidewalk anywhere in western Queens or North Brooklyn, itinerant metal collectors like this gentleman sweep in and grab it. Soiled and blackened by their occupation, these foot soldiers of recycling then make their way to one of the several scrap metal dealers in the neighborhood, where they sell the materials at market rates and by the pound. Often, these fellows won’t wait for metals to reach the curbside midden, and they will harvest whatever metals they might happen across- as recently documented by Ms. Heather at […]

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