Today’s Bit ‘O’ Blight: Karl Fischer Style

April 8, 2009 ·
Filed under: Williamsburg 

This eyesore (and serious public safety hazard) comes courtesy of 227 Grand Street. Be careful where you walk!

Miss Heather

A Girl And Her Blog

April 6, 2009 ·
Filed under: Abjectecture, Brooklyn, Greenpoint Magic, Recession, Williamsburg 

It would appear that politicians (and the developers to whom they are beholden) have done a smashing job of removing “urban blight” (READ: the working class/poor) from north Brooklyn. Who needs nuclear bombs when re-zoning, complicity and bureaucratic incompetence/apathy will do the job? Nonetheless the end product is more or less the same: a community whose quality of life has been compromised.

Follows is a revue of developer-induced blight in north Brooklyn I captured yesterday, April 5. I have entitled it After The Gold Rush.

The sad reality is re-zoning, tax bennies, and easy credit have done little to benefit my neighborhood. There were once businesses that gave people decent, well paying  jobs. Affordable rental property was once in abundance in Greenpoint as well. No more. Thanks to our city’s leadership much of my wonderful neighborhood has become a wasteland peppered by vacant lots, failed condominiums cum overpriced rental property, illegal hostels and super-sized tourist destinations operated by and for the affluent.

The time is long overdue for north Brooklyn to be developed in a manner sensitive to the needs of the people who constitute this community, not the ones Mayor Bloomberg’s rich cronies envision living here.

TO BE CONTINUED.

Miss Heather

P.S.: This one’s for you, Bob.

Spring Has Sprung In North Brooklyn!

Yes folks, you can literally smell it in the air: springtime has finally come to north Brooklyn.

scarybunny

The winteriana has been packed away and replaced with more springtimey fare— such as this deliciously terrifying rabbit from India Street. And not unlike the mighty Monarch butterfly, a number of construction projects have emerged from their respective chrysalises to display their new found glory for all to enjoy.

916manhattanavenue

This humdrum specimen hails from 916 Manhattan Avenue. As you can see it sports some seriously fierce asphalt siding.  No more.  After a couple of modification permits (and a little Greenpoint magic) it has been…

manhattanavefedderized

FEDDERIZED!

Of course what would any discourse about abjectecture be without a mention of my good friend Karl Fischer?

200franklinst32909

Holy 311 calls! It would appear the scaffolding has begun to come down at 200 Franklin Street…

200franklinst2

and what a magnificent sight it is!

200franklinst3

A number of images come to mind when people use words like “craftsmanship” “luxury” or “quality”. This is not one of them.

And last, but hardly least, what would a revue of north Brooklyn abjectecture be without a Belvedere? Good news kids: thanks to the wizards at Belvedere/Bridge Realty North 9 Street Williamsburg can now claim one of their very own!

belvedere26

Or should I make that XXVI?*

belvedere262

Congratulations northside Williamsburg you’ve just joined the club!

nolittering

Too bad this sign doesn’t apply to architecture.

Miss Heather

*Not to let them have a monopoly on all the fun. Behold: Belvedere X of Eckford Street!

belvederex

Nice balconies.




Long Island City Photos Du Jour: Before & After

March 18, 2009 ·
Filed under: Long Island City, Queens 

If you’re out there reading this Karl Fischer…

The cool old power station in Long Island City you rendered into a steaming pile of Buck Rogers-esque of Post Modern crap (which you purportedly take much pride in)…

before

has been duly memorialized for posterity at 50th Avenue. Why not swing by and check it out?

uglyannotated

It shouldn’t be very difficult to find.

Miss Heather

Chewing Karl Fischer’s Chocolate (Once Again)

February 10, 2009 ·
Filed under: Greenpoint Magic 

I planned upon completing New York Shitty’s blogahhreafest yesterday by writing a very nice (and well deserved) puff piece about a new pizzeria in the ‘hood. Then the following challenge darkened my Twitter doorstep.

wgpa

Intrigued to see what this was all about I pointed and clicked my way over to WGPA’s web site:

Every year, the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce sponsors a Building Brooklyn Award for the best architecture of the borough. And every year, Bushwick, Greenpoint and Williamsburg come up short. Since the nominations are due on Thursday, we’d thought we’d throw out a few of the projects that we think are award worthy (and a few that are clearly not worthy).

First, their rules. To be eligible, a project must be completed and have received a CO or TCO in calendar 2008. Now our rules. We’re looking at projects in North Brooklyn only. The BB categories are a little bit wacky (do we really need two categories for residential buildings under 5 families – that’s so 20th-century Brooklyn?). So we’ve added a few of our own.

As of the writing of this post, they haven’t. However, Scarano’s “Canvas Condominiums” made it onto their list. Albeit for different reasons than its very own tenants would recommend.

stinkynys

Not nominated:
118 Greenpoint Avenue
Scarano Architect

This one was designed to the highest preservation standards – those of the NYC Landmarks Commission – but the results are underwhelming to say the least. None of it rises to the level of the unregulated Mill Building. This project would have passed unnoticed, though, were it not for the cornice, which looks like someone installed a crown molding on the face of a factory.

Um, you forgot the fact it is located next to a poultry slaughter house whose stench has been rather fowl (pun intended) of late. One would presume the WGPA would understand the primary rule of New York City real estate: location, location, location. Apparently they do not. Nonetheless, if you’re into treading upon offal-soaked sidewalks on the way to the G train in the morning (or really like chickens), this is the place is for you. Be sure to inquire about the eastern-most units: they have windows overlooking this facility!

But back to my nomination. Who else would I recommend than my good friend Karl Fischer and the Newtown Creek-esque creation train wreck he erected at 130 Diamond Street?

karlskrap1

The presence of a discarded stove in the foyer is a nice touch.

karlskrap2

Savor for a moment— if you will— the painstaking crafts CRAPmanship lavished upon this stairway.

karlskrap3

See that door to the left? That’s the entrance for the “mobility impaired” (READ: wheelchair users). Makes a damned nice place to chuck your garbage doesn’t it?

karlskrap4

The highly skilled and no doubt well recompensed laborers* who built this magnificent testament to Greenpoint gentrification didn’t see fit to remove the shrink wrap from this panel. And so it has remained there for a year now.

karlskrap5

Note how seamlessly Karl’s Krap fits in with its neighbors.

karlskrap6

But the erection of this satellite dish (whose cable is draped on the front of the building) is a promising start! One would presume such luxurious digs would be wired for broadband, but then again this is only Greenpoint. We’re living La Vida Fischer, baby:

That’s what makes parts of Brooklyn so special. You have all of these rowhouses, townhouses, smaller-scale developments, more neighborhood-friendly developments. You have more open space. The quality of life in this way is going to be preserved in Brooklyn.

– Karl Fischer

Um, okay.

Miss Heather

P.S.: Next year the WGPA can look forward to me nominating this gem. Provided it actually gets completed. Even if it isn’t I’ll nominate it anyway.

*This is sarcasm.

Retail Space For Rent On Franklin Street!

December 1, 2008 ·
Filed under: Abjectecture, Greenpoint Magic, Vomit 

WOW. 500 -3,400 square feet sounds pretty phat. As does 1,400 – 5,200 square feet of “professional space”. But there’s one hitch…

it hasn’t been built yet.

Here’s a photograph of floor one of Karl Fischer’s 200 Franklin Street Frankenfinger . It was taken November 27, 2008. Do you honestly think these clowns are going to have this floor (much less a second floor of “professional space” and the heap of crap above it) completed by February 2009? Really?

But I suppose hope GREED springs eternal.

Miss Heather

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