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DOWNTOWN
POST NYC 
 
News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
 
 
Volume 5, No. 7   April 24, 2018  
IN THIS ISSUE

QUOTE OF THE DAY:
"Once it started, it just spread all over the world. It worked because it was a real expression of people's feelings."
      -  Designer Milton Glaser explaining why the logo that he created around 40 years ago for New York State, "I Heart NY," has become an enduring icon.

* Calendar: April - Battery bird walks

WEATHER INFORMATION: For current weather information, click here.
 
Go to www.DowntownPostNYC.com for breaking news and for updated  Downtown Post NYC bulletin board and calendar information.

MASTHEAD PHOTO: Crocus vernus, primarily native to high alpine areas of Europe, growing in Battery Park City's Rockefeller Park. April 12, 2018 (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer) 

editorLETTER FROM THE EDITOR: LOWER MANHATTAN'S FARM  
 
Terese Loeb Kreuzer, editor
In 2011, eight students from Millennium High School in Lower Manhattan came to Battery Park Conservancy President Warrie Price with a request. They wanted to start a garden but their school, housed in a former office building on Broad Street, was not conducive to such a project. The students wondered if they could use a little bit of 25-acre Battery Park for a vegetable garden. Price said yes. After getting approval from the Parks Department, one acre was set aside for a garden on the east side of Battery Park. It was supposed to be there for two years.

It's still there. Not only is it still there, but it has grown in size and in scope. That single acre sprouted a vegetable farm, a forest farm and oyster restoration stations. Students grow more than 100 varieties of vegetables in The Battery's farm. In the forest farm's exploratory ecosystem, they learn about native plants and pollinators. Water ecology is the focus for students who help track and care for the four oyster restoration stations located off The Battery's waterfront promenade.

Today, nearly 5,000 students from more than 100 schools throughout the five boroughs and beyond visit The Battery annually to work on some aspect of its urban farm.

This is a wonderful example of how taking a bit of a chance on something and saying 'yes' to it instead of 'no' can produce remarkable results. The Battery's urban farm may be growing more than vegetables. It may be growing young people with a passion for science and biology. It may be growing people who appreciate the memorable taste of freshly harvested food. It may be growing people with a visceral understanding of how much we humans need to be in contact with the Earth and with what it nurtures. The students who come to the urban farm will know something about that and are not likely to forget it.

(For more information about The Battery's urban farm, click here. To support The Battery Conservancy, click here. The Battery Conservancy is a 501(c)(3) educational not-for-profit organization. Contributions are tax deductible.)

HOW TO SUPPORT DOWNTOWN POST NYC - Downtown Post NYC is emailed free to subscribers, but if you like DPNYC and want to support it, you can do that in four ways. 1) Make a contribution to Downtown Post NYC.  Email editor@downtownpostnyc.com for more information. 2) Support Downtown Post's advertisers by clicking on their ads, and if you use their services, tell them that you read about them in DPNYC. 3) Consider advertising in DPNYC if you have a business, service or event that you want to promote. 4) Tell people about DPNYC and suggest that they subscribe. They can sign up at www.DowntownPostNYC.com.

Terese Loeb Kreuzer
Editor

On April 11, 2011, Battery Park Conservancy president Warrie Price and Parks & Recreation Commissioner Adrian Benepe were joined by students from three schools to inaugurate the urban farm in The Battery. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)


The emailed Downtown Post NYC newsletter is appearing less frequently than formerly, however, Downtown Post NYC's website (www.DowntownPostNYC.com) is updated daily. That's the place to check  for urgent messages, breaking news and reminders of interesting events in and around Lower Manhattan.



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helicopterFIVE YEARS AFTER CONSTRUCTION BEGAN, PARTS OF PIER 17
IN THE SOUTH STREET SEAPORT WILL OPEN THIS SUMMER 

Pier 17 in the South Street Seaport will start to open in May. On April 19, Saul Scherl, president of the New York Tri-State Region of The Howard Hughes Corporation, led a tour of the building. (Photos: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

For more than five years, Pier 17 in the South Street Seaport has been an object of contention and curiosity. On March 20, 2013, New York City Council approved The Howard Hughes Corporation's plans to tear down the existing structure on the pier and erect a new building, swathed in glass.

Now that building is about to open. On April 19, Saul Scherl, president of the New York Tri-State Region of The Howard Hughes Corporation, led a tour of the building for residents of Lower Manhattan and members of Community Board 1.

Pier 17 was designed by SHoP Architects with extensive use of glass to maximize waterfront views and admit light. There are approximately 212,000 square feet of space in the building, which, at the moment, is only partially leased.

On the two lower levels of the four-story pier building are six two-story structures that HHC refers to as the "Pier Village." Each of the village "boxes" as HHC calls them, can encompass a business or a part of a business. They range in size from five "boxes" of 5,500 square feet to one "box" of 18,000 square feet.

Three of the boxes have been leased to high-end restaurateurs Andrew Carmellini, David Chang of the Momofuku Group and Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Jean-Georges plans to open in the fall of 2018, followed by David Chang late in 2018 and Carmellini in 2019.

Howard Hughes is in the process of negotiating leases for the 18,000 square foot "box" and, according to HHC, "will share additional details as they become available."

The roof of Pier 17 will be the first part of the building to open. It is approximately one and a half acres in size, with views of the Brooklyn Bridge to the north, Governors Island to the south and much of Lower Manhattan.

Concerts will be staged on the roof with the Brooklyn Bridge as the backdrop for the stage. The programming for the inaugural season will be announced on May 7 with Live Nation as the exclusive booking partner.

Although the stage area will be shielded by temporary structures designed by German architect Achim Menges, the rooftop itself will be open to wind and weather. Artificial turf will be rolled out over part of the paving and will be in place subject to weather conditions and the events scheduled on the roof.

The Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP) application that City Council approved in March 2013 specified that portions of the rooftop must be made available without charge to community-based organizations, up to four times a year. In addition, the ULURP said that the public must be guaranteed free access to the pier at all times.

Although HHC plans to stage concerts on the roof for up to 3,400 people at a time (standing) or 2,400 people seated, HHC says that the public can use the roof when it is not being used for an event. An area of approximately 10,000 square feet on the western portion of the rooftop will be open to the public at all times, including during concerts.

The rooftop is very windy, which will have an impact on what kind of movable seating can safely be installed. At the moment, there are some heavy lounge chairs and benches on the roof.

A small restaurant on the roof, no reservations accepted, will be able to accommodate up to 61 people seated inside and up to 260 people outside on the north and south patios. The menu is still under development.

Three escalators plus elevators provide access to the third and fourth stories of the pier building and to the rooftop. People attending events on the roof will pass through the north side of the pier, which HHC calls the "Riverdeck." It overlooks the East River and the Brooklyn Bridge and will be open to the public most of the time. It has been furnished with benches and gliders designed by James Corner Field Operations and SHoP Architects.

The Riverdeck will be one of the first parts of the pier to open to the public this summer, along with the rooftop.

The ULURP for Pier 17 approved by City Council in March 2013 specified that the plans for the pier, as presented, had to be redesigned to accommodate maritime uses. A new plan had to be submitted to City Council no later than June 30, 2013.

According to Saul Scherl, docking on the north side of the pier is not currently planned. The Howard Hughes Corporation is talking with boat operators about docking opportunities on the eastern and southern flanks of the pier. In addition, there is a notch in the middle of the pier that Scherl said might be able to be utilized to accommodate boats docking on its eastern flank.

At the time that City Council signed off on the ULURP for Pier 17, The Howard Hughes Corporation had a 60-year-long lease on the pier and on parts of the South Street Seaport. The New York City Economic Development Corporation (EDC), acting as the landlord for the HHC premises in the Seaport, negotiated a deal with HHC whereby Hughes was paying $3.64 a square foot to lease Seaport real estate with an annual 3 percent escalation clause and no rent due on the pier until it opened.

According to a report prepared by the Real Estate Board of New York in the spring of 2016, the average asking rent for ground floor space in the Financial District was $326 per square foot as of April 1, 2016.

When the March 2013 ULURP was approved, HHC estimated the cost of reconstructing the mall on Pier 17 at $200 million based on using the pier's existing pilings. Not long after beginning the demolition of the old mall, HHC announced that it was going to have to tear out the old pilings and replace them. This may explain, in part, why HHC's investment in the South Street Seaport is now pegged at $785 million including both Pier 17 and other properties in the Seaport uplands. That is not an apples to apples comparison with the estimated $200 million for the pier alone, but it does indicate that construction delays and changes to the plans for the pier have been costly. However, given the vast difference between what HHC is paying to lease space in the South Street Seaport and what it can command in rentals, even escalating costs and thousands of square feet of unleased space have probably not cost HHC management too many sleepless nights.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer

For additional photographs of Pier 17 and more information about what's happening on the pier, go to the Downtown Post NYC website ( http://www.DowntownPostNYC.com) or click here to go directly to the page for Pier 17.

 
On May 4, the Knickerbocker Chamber Orchestra conducted by Gary S. Fagin performs the world premiere of Fagin's "The Struggle to Forgive: Confronting Gun Violence in America," a cantata for three soloists and orchestra. The libretto is based on audio, video and written accounts of those living with the aftermath of gun violence or the loss of a loved one. There will be a post-show discussion with artists and members of Pace University. Place: Schimmel Center at Pace University. Time: 7:30 p.m. Tickets: Starting at $29. (Save 20 percent if purchased before April 27, 2018 at 11:59 p.m. Use code FRIENDS20). For more information and to buy tickets, click here.


YorkTRIBECA FILM FESTIVAL: SOME NEW YORK STORIES
 
Novelty license plate with the I Heart NY symbol photographed in Times Square.
(From I HEART NY)

As usual, the annual Tribeca Film Festival, now in its last week, is loaded with stories that take place in New York City. It's fun to see familiar places on the screen and also to see New Yorkers, both familiar and unfamiliar, do their New York thing. There's still time before the festival closes on April 29 to take some of this in. Here are some suggestions:

Howard: If you've lived in New York City long enough and had any interest in theater, you might remember the hole-in-the-wall, off-off Broadway theaters of the 1970's. That's
Behind the scenes of "Beauty and the Beast." Nov. 1991. Alan Menken, Howard Ashman, Danny Troob, and David Friedman. (Photographer: Walt Disney Archives, Photo Library)
 

where Howard Ashman, the creative mind and the lyricist behind such Disney classics as "Beauty and the Beast" and "The Little Mermaid" got his start.

After college, he helped found the WPA Theater in a derelict section of New York, living on air and crumbs until his adaptation of Roger Corman's film "The Little Shop of Horrors" brought him fame and a bank account. This success was followed by the failure of a Broadway musical, "Smile," on which Ashman collaborated with Marvin Hamlisch.

Ashman fled to Los Angeles to lick his wounds. There he found a haven in the Disney Studios, with its numerous experts in animation who were still new to developing animated musicals. Ashman invited his New York song-writing partner, Alan Menken, to join him in L.A. Their first collaboration for Disney resulted in the Oscar-winning score and songs for "The Little Mermaid."

"Howard," the film, was directed by Don Hahn, who worked with Ashman at Disney. Despite the use of a lot of old, grainy photographs and the lack of fancy camerawork, the result is interesting and ultimately moving. Ashman both triumphs in Hollywood and simultaneously succumbs to AIDS. He died in March 1991 at the age of 39. That is something else that those who have lived in New York City long enough may remember - when the AIDS epidemic, then without a cure, picked off creative people left and right in the prime of their lives.

"I wanted Howard, one of the great storytellers of our time, to tell his own story in his own words," Hahn says of his film. "I wanted to celebrate his talent and understand the pain of his AIDS diagnosis to the people closest to him. I wanted to bring Howard back to life through his words and music, at least for 90 minutes, to testify to his genius and let an audience draw the conclusion that I drew nearly three decades ago: that this one man revolutionized the musical through his off-off Broadway hits and then through his work at Disney."

Alan Menken wrote the score for this film, dedicated to his colleague and dear friend, Howard Ashman.

April 24: 3:30 p.m. Regal Cinemas, Battery Park 11, 102 North End Ave.
April 26: 7 p.m. Cinépolis Chelsea, 260 West 23rd St.

Saul's 108th Story: Yikes! This is a charming film about how a Brooklyn teenager named Saul Moroz got into the glass installation business in New York City, where there's
Saul Moroz (Photo: Joshua Carlon)
plenty of glass to install. The film starts with Saul, now an old man, describing something that happened to him in the summer of 1950. He thought he was going to spend the summer hanging out with friends, but a friend's father said, "Tomorrow, I'm taking you to work!" And what work that turned out to be! Not to spoil the story, but it had to do with the Empire State Building and his friend's father's oft-repeated expression, "Don't worry about it!" The film includes a graphic that says, "Workplace Safety Standards in the 1950s. An introduction."

Enough said. See the film, which was written and directed by Joshua Carlon.

I Heart New York: Someone (unseen and unknown) must have posed a question: "What's your first memory of New York?" and "Where did you grow up?" Apparently, we are in the midst of a conversation.

This short film begins with a glimpse of Manhattan, looking down on it from the north accompanied by the sound of a train rumbling along the subway tracks and then by an old man's voice answering the questions that we didn't hear: "My first memory of New York - I grew up in the Bronx. The neighborhood was full of immigrants from Europe fleeing Nazis and fleeing the Holocaust. They came here with the sense that this was a land of opportunity, that you could lead a full life and you could raise your children better."

The old man is not identified. In fact, his face is not even shown until almost the end of the film, but he quickly lets us know that he loves New York. "It's a city that ultimately cannot be anticipated," he says. And then he remembers the time around 40 years ago when the city was on the verge of bankruptcy and in despair and he was asked to come up with a logo to increase tourism and boost morale. In the back of a taxi cab, he made a sketch on a piece of paper: A heart symbol preceded by the word "I" and followed by "New York."

The designer thought his little idea might have a life span of a couple of weeks. Instead, it became an icon. "Once it started, it just spread all over the world," he says. "It worked because it was a real expression of people's feelings."

Finally, we see the man's face. It is Milton Glaser, designer not only of the "I Heart NY" logo but of the psychedelic Bob Dylan poster that has sold millions of copies and of hundreds of other posters - Glaser, the co-founder of New York Magazine. Glaser - whose work is in museums all over the world and on items such as T-shirts and coffee cups that people use in their daily lives.

The "I Heart NY" film was masterfully directed by Andre Andreev, who is based in New York City but who, like Glaser, is an immigrant. Andreev came from Bulgaria, where his mother managed a movie theater and his father worked as a graphic designer. This background must have helped give Andreev the chops to create this film about the master designer, Glaser. The film is short but it's a gem.

Both "Saul's 108th Story" and "I Heart New York" are part of a program of short films showing at these places and times:

April 25: 10 p.m. Regal Cinemas, Battery Park 11, 102 North End Ave.
April 27: 6:30 p.m. Cinépolis Chelsea, 260 West 23rd St.
April 28: 6:30 p.m. Cinépolis Chelsea, 260 West 23rd St.

Brooklyn Breeze: Cute! Take the subway and leave Manhattan behind! See the Cyclone! The parachute jump! The Wonder Wheel! The dancing water towers! The El! And much,  much more! "Brooklyn Breeze" is a four-minute-long animated film, directed and written by Alex Budovsky that recalls some of Brooklyn's iconic spots and others not often seen by visitors. Budovsky's Brooklyn is set against music of the 1920's and early '30's recorded by New York-based Michael Arenella and his Dreamland Orchestra.

Part of a program of animated short films curated by Whoopi Goldberg.

April 24: 6 p.m. Regal Cinemas, Battery Park 11, 102 North End Ave.
April 27: 3:45 p.m. Cinépolis Chelsea, 260 West 23rd St.
April 28: 4:15 p.m. Cinépolis Chelsea, 260 West 23rd St.
April 29: 5 p.m. Regal Cinemas, Battery Park 11, 102 North End Ave.

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer

From "Brooklyn Breeze." By Alex Budovsky


For tickets to the Tribeca Film Festival, click here.



 Bits & Bytes 
willowWILLOW TREE PRUNING; CORTLANDT STREET SUBWAY STATION
TO REOPEN; COMPLETIO
N FUNDING FOR HUDSON RIVER PARK  
  
The willow trees outside the Museum of Jewish Heritage in the southern end of Battery Park City were pruned in early March. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
 
Willow tree pruning: Early in March, the Battery Park City Parks horticulture team pruned the weeping willow (Salix babylonica) trees outside the Museum of Jewish Heritage at the southern end of Battery Park City. According to the Battery Park City Authority, due to the fragility of willow branches and limbs, they require pruning on a regular three- to four-year cycle so as not to endanger passersby on windy days. The BPCA says that pruning  promotes a healthy, stronger structure that will allow the trees to survive much longer, adding that the willows will leaf out over the coming months and return to their familiar "weeping" look by the spring of 2019.

"No. 1 line to run again at Cortlandt St. station for first time since 9/11 destruction," nydailynews.com, 4/22/18. "Dust-clotted debris and crumpled I-beams have given way to gleaming new track and actual walls as the Cortlandt St. subway station awakens 17 years after the 9/11 attacks crushed it," says the Daily News. "The last piece of the WTC site, the station on the No. 1 line - which ran beneath the marvel that was the World Trade Center and which had an entrance near the hallowed Survivor Steps that saved hundreds of people running for their lives - is set to reopen in October, a few months after its 100th birthday July 1. Following nearly two decades of doing without, one might wonder at the need for this $158 million station. After all, people have made other commuting arrangements in the ensuing years. And the Port Authority's behemoth Oculus and Fulton Center, with its myriad subway connections and PATH station, is nearby. But Cortlandt St. has been missed for both its usefulness and its symbolism." For the complete article, click here.

"Cuomo touts funding to complete Hudson River Park, but de Blasio is paying half," Crain's New York Business, 4/5/18. "Addressing a business group in Lower Manhattan on Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo crowed that the new state budget not only obligates the city to cough up $400 million to fix the subways-which he called 'a beautiful idea' -but also $50 million for Hudson River Park, an unfinished joint venture between the state and city," says Crain's New York Business. "In front of the Association for a Better New York at Cipriani Wall Street, the governor directed his remarks to former Mayor David Dinkins, whom he credited with envisioning the West Side sanctuary along with the late former Gov. Mario Cuomo. 'The gift we are going to give you, Mr. Mayor, is we are going to finish it,' the governor said to applause, as he noted the park's original planned completion date was in 2003. 'We have a final plan, it requires an additional $100 million. The state budget passed has $50 million from the state and mandates that the city pays $50 million.'" The article notes that, "No one expected Cuomo would extract money from the city to fulfill his promise" to complete Hudson River Park." For the complete article, click here.

"With L Train Shutdown a Year Off, Lower Manhattan Braces for Upheaval," New York Times, 4/3/2018. "One year from now a large swath of Lower Manhattan will face a deluge. Fourteenth Street, for nearly its entire length, will be transformed into the busiest bus route in the country, ferrying as many as 84,000 people a day," says T he New York Times. "Seventy buses an hour will stream across the Williamsburg Bridge and pour into the neighborhoods of Chinatown and SoHo, where narrow streets will have to accommodate three new bus routes.And the equally tight streets of the West Village will have to make room for an anticipated 5,000 bicyclists on miles of freshly laid bike path, while vehicle counts on some streets are expected to jump over 70 percent during peak rush periods. After months of meetings and the fine-tuning of contingencies, this is the sweeping situation that has begun to emerge. It is expected to play out in 2019 when the Metropolitan Transportation Authority shuts down the workhorse L train in Manhattan for 15 months to repair damage, from Hurricane Sandy, to the tunnel that carries the train under the East River. The city's plan to deal with the loss of one of the system's busiest lines, closing a section that serves 275,000 daily riders, entails a sweeping overhaul to roads, traffic patterns and bus routes that will reshape and strain many streets. The fear among local residents is what the onslaught will mean for neighborhoods already choked by constant traffic snarls." For the complete article, click here.



Chichi Chronicles, a Rediscovery of New York City History by Chinon Maria

Exhibition at the World Trade Gallery
April 13-May10
120 Broadway
For more information, click here



Downtown bulletin board
perennial PERENNIAL PLANT CARE WORKSHOP; SAILORS' BALL TICKETS; BATTERY PARK CITY WAYFINDING SURVEY; HUDSON RIVER PARK  
 
Battery Park in summer. The park was landscaped by the Dutch horticulturalist Piet Oudolf. On May 5, The Battery Conservancy is offering a free workshop in perennial plant care.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
 
Wayfinding signage: The Battery Park City Authority is in the process of developing new wayfinding signage, intended to guide motorists, bicyclists, transit users, and pedestrians along and through streets (in concert and coordination with existing New York City street signage), sidewalks, public spaces, and transition points across Battery Park City's 92-acres. This process will result in the design and implementation of new signage across the neighborhood, replacing the old, dated, and in some cases worn signage now extant.
 
Over the course of the past few months the BPCA has been gathering feedback from various neighborhood and community stakeholders about wayfinding. To supplement that effort, the BPCA has created a short, online survey, the responses to which will help guide future signage content and design. That survey can be found by clicking here.
 
In addition to this survey, the Battery Park City Authority will be seeking additional input from the community at forthcoming public meetings and presentations.

Sailors Ball tickets: The 21st annual Sailors Ball, this year on Saturday, April 28, celebrates the start of the new sailing season. The black-tie ball, from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., features an open bar, light hors d'oeuvres, dancing and a raffle. It is preceded by the VIP 12 Meter Dinner from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The ball and dinner take place at the historic Down Town Association on Pine Street, a landmark of 19th century downtown architecture whose walls are lined with paintings, maps and drawings reflecting the history of the area. The Sailors Ball benefits Operation Optimist, the largest junior sailing program in New York Harbor. Tickets for the Ball: $120 on or before April 24; $150 (at the door, if available). Tickets for the VIP Dinner (including the Ball): $295. For more information and to buy tickets, click here.

Sailing programs for junior sailors:
Registration is now open for Manhattan Sailing School's programs for junior sailors. Operation Optimist is for kids 8 to 13 and the Teen Sailing Academy is for 13- to 18-year-olds. Boats for Operation Optimist can be picked up in Manhattan and Jersey City locations, with sailing instruction in the protected water southwest of the Statue of Liberty. The program teaches kids how to sail their Optimist dinghy by themselves. The Teen Sailing Academy has three levels of instruction beginning with Basic Sailing on J24 keelboats. Level 2 is dinghy sailing on 420s and Lasers. Level 3 is the new Coastal Cruising Adventure on a 36-foot-long sloop. This course involves three days of sailing from New York Harbor to Long Island Sound and back. For more information about Operation Optimist, click here. For more information about the Teen Sailing Academy, click here.

Perennial plant care workshop: On May 5, the Battery Conservancy is offering a workshop in perennial plant care open to community gardeners throughout New York City. Amid perennial gardens designed by the renowned Piet Oudolf, the Battery Conservancy's chief horticulturalist will teach how to care for perennials and grasses. Topics will include plant division, cut back, soil replenishment, weed control and other basic care. After a hands-on plant division activity, participants may take the plants they divide home with them. Meeting place: The plaza in front of Castle Clinton. Time: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free. Reservation required. To register, click here.

Hudson River Park:
On May 5, Hudson River Park will be one of many parks throughout New York State to participate in the 7th annual "I Love My Park Day" sponsored by the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. The purpose of the statewide event is to enhance parks, historic sites and public lands and raise awareness of the state's outdoor recreation assets and their needs. At Hudson River Park, volunteers will be doing general horticulture maintenance and winter clean-up projects, such as non-native species removal, cutback, bed preparation with compost/soil, and possibly some painting. More specific details will be announced to registrants closer to the project date, depending on the spring needs of the Park. Adults 18 and over only. Wear closed-toe shoes for safety and layers for warmth. Meeting place: Pier 40 (at West Houston Street). Time: 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For questions about this event, call (347) 515-2242 or email tkent@hudsonriverpark.org. To register, click here.

Most of the Downtown Post NYC bulletin board listings are now on the Downtown Post NYC website. To see the bulletin board listings, click here.




rainyPublic art in Lower Manhattan
POEMS FOR A RAINY DAY
 
 An example of a poem stenciled on a sidewalk in Battery Park City, part of a public art project. The poems were written by renowned poets and by local schoolchildren. (Photo: Courtesy of the Battery Park City Authority)
 
Here's something to look forward to when it rains in Battery Park City. The Battery Park City Authority (BPCA) is installing stenciled messages on some BPC sidewalks with words that will only be visible when it rains. The installation, called "Raining Poetry," consists of excerpts of nine poems by noted poets such as United States Poet Laureate and Pulitzer Prize winner Tracy K. Smith, Langston Hughes, Sylvia Plath and others, plus the poetry of schoolchildren from P.S. 276 and P.S. 89 in Battery Park City and from P.S. 1 in Chinatown.

When B.J. Jones became president and chief operating officer of the Battery Park City Authority in February, he declared his intention of partnering with local cultural institutions and specifically mentioned Poets House at 10 River Terrace as one of them. "Raining Poetry" is the first installment on that promise. Poets House's Executive Director Lee Briccetti said that she was "thrilled" at the collaboration with the Battery Park City Authority.   
 
Poets House, a 70,000-volume, open-stack poetry library located in Battery Park City's north neighborhood, is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. Visitors will find a tranquil place to work (with free WiFi), an inspiring library, art on the walls and in a small gallery that features rotating exhibitions, and a children's room with books, artifacts and child-sized furniture.

Throughout much of the year, Poets House offers lectures (moderately priced and free to members) and poetry-writing classes.  
     
Poem excerpts will be installed using biodegradable, water-repellent spray on stencils with letters approximately two inches tall. Then, on rainy days throughout the spring, summer, and fall, poem excerpts will be found at the following Battery Park City locations:

 
·         Chambers Street in front of Stuyvesant High School 
·         P.S. / I.S. 276 on Battery Place 
·         P.S. 89 / I.S. 289 on Warren Street 
·         Children's Garden at Rockefeller Park 
·         Battery Park City Library on North End Avenue 
·         Poets House on River Terrace 
·         Teardrop Park South 
·         Irish Hunger Memorial Plaza 
·         Brookfield Place / Battery Park City Ferry Terminal 
·         Belvedere Plaza near Pylons 
·         Vesey Street Crosswalk at North End Avenue 
·         Liberty Street Crosswalk near West Street 
·         Murray Street Crosswalk near West Street 
·         Walkway between Rector Park East and West Thames Park 
·         Pier A Plaza

- Terese Loeb Kreuzer     




calendar CALENDAR: April 2018  
Spotlight: Battery bird walks

A black-and-white warbler, photographed in Battery Park City. Black-and-white warblers breed in northern and eastern North America and winter in Florida, Central America and the West Indies down to Peru. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

The Battery at the southern tip of Manhattan, is a 25-acre park that includes public gardens, organic urban farms, toxin-free lawns and the SeaGlass carousel. It also includes numerous sculpted memorials and a National Monument - historic Castle Clinton, a fort that was erected just prior to the War of 1812 to help defend New York Harbor, and that later served as a concert hall, an aquarium and as an immigration portal prior to the opening of Ellis Island.

The Battery is open daily.

April 24: Spring migration bird walk: Twice a year, birds of many species pass through New York City as they migrate between their winter and summer homes. Some of these birds travel thousands of miles. New York City's gardens and parks are welcome places to rest and recuperate during their journey. NYC Audubon and The Battery Conservancy are offering spring migration bird walks led by Gabriel Willow, an educator from NYC Audubon. Time: 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. Free. Meet at the Netherland Memorial Flagpole (at the intersection of Broadway, Battery Place and State Street). (Also on May 1, May 8 and May 15 at 8 a.m.) For more information, click here.


 
For more calendar listings, go to the Downtown Post NYC website. Click here.



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