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DOWNTOWN
POST NYC 
 
News and Events
in Lower Manhattan
 
 
Volume 5, No. 9   May 23, 2018  
IN THIS ISSUE

QUOTE OF THE DAY:
"The street is accessible by nearly every subway line, is bordered by two of the city's wealthiest neighborhoods, and has the same cast-iron architecture that made SoHo famous."
      -  From a New York Times article, "The Gentrification of Canal Street," published on May 16, 2018

* Calendar: May - New York Harbor beckons

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: Robbins Reef Light in Upper New York Bay. May 8, 2018
(¬©Terese Loeb Kreuzer 2018)  


editorLETTER FROM THE EDITOR: HOW TO READ THE NEWS    
 
Terese Loeb Kreuzer, editor
In what subjectively seems like ancient history, Eric T. Schneiderman resigned as New York State Attorney General on May 7, 2018 just a few hours after The New Yorker published an article citing four women who claimed that Schneiderman had physically assaulted them.  
 
Four days later, there were more allegations, this time from a lawyer named Peter Gleason, who said that two women had contacted him "some years ago" alleging that Schneiderman had "sexually victimized" them. Gleason said that in 2013 he discussed these claims with Michael D. Cohen, frequently described as "Donald J. Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer."  
 
Gleason's intent, reinforced by Cohen, seems to have been that Trump could weaponize these claims should Trump want to run for political office and should Schneiderman become too aggressive and pesky in his pursuit of Trump's activities. These included Trump University, which Schneiderman claimed in a legal action, had defrauded its students. This lawsuit, much to Trump's displeasure, resulted in a $25 million settlement for the students.   
 
Anyone who has lived in Lower Manhattan for a while may find the name "Peter Gleason" to be familiar. In 2003, he ran against Alan Gerson for City Council, garnering 17 percent of the vote. In 2009, he tried again to win a City Council seat. That year, he sued Gerson and his campaign, alleging fraud in the collection of petition signatures. A judge in the New York State Supreme Court dismissed Gleason's suit.  
 
Gleason's name surfaced in the news again in 2012. A woman named Anna Gristina was accused of running a multimillion dollar prostitution ring from her East 78th Street apartment. Gleason showed up in State Supreme Court asking that Gristina's court-appointed attorney be removed from the case and that Gleason replace him. Gleason offered to put up his $2.5 million Tribeca loft on North Moore Street as bail and even said that the accused madam, her four children and her husband could move in with him. Nothing came of this because the judge said that he wasn't sure that this was ethical. He also pointed out that Gleason had no experience trying felony cases.    
 
So now Gleason is back in the news again. 
 
On April 9, 2018, something happened that made Gleason uneasy. The FBI, armed with a search warrant, raided Michael Cohen's office, home and hotel room, leaving with all his papers, his cellphones and his files as potential evidence that Cohen was involved in bank fraud, wire fraud and violations of campaign finance law. This haul ended up in the Lower Manhattan courtroom of federal Judge Kimba M. Wood, who is overseeing the investigation.  
 
Worried that his actions on behalf of the two women who accused Schneiderman of sexual assault might surface among Cohen's papers, Gleason asked Judge Wood for an order to protect any records regarding this matter from becoming public. She gave him until May 18 to either support his request for a protective order in writing or withdraw the request.
 
We may hear more about this matter. In the meantime, for a short refresher in how to read the news, it's worth parsing The New York Times article in which Gleason's accusations against Schneiderman were first described. The article, entitled "Lawyer for 2 Schneiderman Accusers Brought Their Claims to Michael Cohen" ran on May 11, 2018.  
 
The article begins: "A lawyer who says he once represented two women who claimed that the former New York attorney general, Eric T. Schneiderman, had 'sexually victimized' them several years ago, asserted on Friday that he discussed their claims in 2013 with an unlikely person: Michael D. Cohen, Donald J. Trump's longtime lawyer and fixer."
 
In reading a news story, pay particular attention to the verbs and the adjectives. In the paragraph above, for instance, there is the use of the word "says" (the lawyer...says), "claimed" (two women...claimed) and "asserted" (i.e., "he says, she says.") And then there's the adjective "unlikely," which should raise an immediate question in the reader's mind as to why in Sam Hill did Gleason go to Cohen with these tidbits? 
 
I'm sure you get the idea. Have fun.  
       
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Terese Loeb Kreuzer
Editor
 
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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rooftopHOWARD HUGHES ANNOUNCES SUMMER CONCERT SERIES STARTING JULY 28 AND PUTS TICKETS ON SALE FOR PIER 17 ROOFTOP
 
 The Howard Hughes Corporation placed a kiosk on Fulton Street in July 2015 describing the Pier 17 rooftop as "The World's Premier Boutique Entertainment Venue."
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
 
When Saul Scherl, executive vice president of The Howard Hughes Corporation, appeared before Community Board 1's Waterfront, Parks and Resiliency Committee on Feb. 20, 2018 to explain and discuss plans for the Pier 17 rooftop, he said reassuringly that only a couple of concerts had been scheduled for this summer. That would give HHC and the community an opportunity to identify and address any unforeseen problems having to do with crowd control, noise and access, he indicated. However, the plans have changed.  

The Howard Hughes Corporation recently announced its summer concert lineup for the rooftop of Pier 17 in the South Street Seaport, with 23 performances scheduled between July 28 and Oct. 12.  
 
The lineup features musical icons such as Diana Ross on Sept. 30, Gladys Knight on Aug. 25 and Paul Anka on Oct. 7. Host of "The Daily Show," Trevor Noah, is slated to appear on Aug. 12.  
 
Ticket prices range from $35 for some concerts during which the audience will stand to $679 (the resale price) for a performance by ventriloquist and comedian Jeff Dunham on Sept. 6. Many concerts have tickets costing from $151 to $250.  
 
During performances, the rooftop can accommodate around 3,400 standing and 2,400 people seated. That should mean that Howard Hughes can gross an average of around $400,000 per performance if all the tickets are sold. Just a few days after the tickets went on sale, at least two performances - the Kings of Leon on Aug. 2 and Aug. 3 - had sold out. General admission tickets for the Aug. 2 concert cost $250 each. 
 
- Terese Loeb Kreuzer 
        



 Bits & Bytes 
affordabilityDOWNTOWN LANDLORDS WIN 'AFFORDABILITY' CASE; CANAL STREET GENTRIFIES; TRINITY CHURCH RENOVATION; 70 PINE ST. DINING   
 
The historic fireboat John J. Harvey, launched in 1931 and retired from active FDNY service in 1994, is now at Caddell Dry Dock & Ship Repair on Staten Island for an overhaul and a new paint job. As part of a public art commission, when she emerges, she will have been painted by Tauba Auerbach, a New York-based visual artist known for abstract pieces, who plans to employ designs inspired by World War I-era "dazzle camouflage," which used contrasting geometric shapes and colors to disguise a ship's size, speed and direction. Beginning July 1, John J. Harvey will dock in various places around New York Harbor, offering free trips to the public. The project marks the 100th anniversary year of the end of World War I, and was co-commissioned by 14-18 Now, an arts organization that commissions art related to the First World War. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)  

"Appellate court delivers win for downtown landlords," Crain's New York Business, 5/18/18. "A panel of judges delivered a victory for Lower Manhattan landlords Thursday, ruling that rent-regulated apartments that received a particular tax break can be converted to market-rate once rents reach a certain threshold," says Crain's New York Business. "Between 1995 and 2006, the state offered downtown landlords a property tax break called 421-g that was supposed to spur the conversion of commercial office buildings into residential towers, according to the NYU Furman Center, which noted that between 1,000 and 5,000 units were produced by the policy. In exchange for the benefit, the owners were allowed to set initial rents at market rates, but thereafter would have to abide by the state's rent-regulation laws-with one big caveat: For several types of newly created apartments, the regulation rules only apply if the rent is below a threshold set by the state." For the complete article, click here.
 
"The Gentrification of Canal Street," New York Times, 5/16/18. Canal Street is being transformed from an emporium for the likes of shrink-wrapped counterfeit purses displayed on a blanket to the venue for a high-end luxury goods store and a hip jewelry boutique, says The New York Times. Beth Bugdaycay and her  husband, Murat, are the founders of the fine jewelry label Foundrae, one of the latest shops to open around Canal. They were attracted to the area for a variety of reasons. "The street is accessible by nearly every subway line, is bordered by two of the city's wealthiest neighborhoods, and has the same cast-iron architecture that made SoHo famous," says The Times. "In March, Foundrae unveiled its shop on Lispenard, a two-block street that runs into Canal, joining the ranks of retail pioneers including R.W. Guild, a luxury home goods store at the corner of Canal and Mercer Streets, and Canal Street Market, at 265 Canal." For the complete article, click here.

"Trinity Church Commences First Rejuvenation In 70 Years," New York YIMBY, 5/7/18. "One of the most significant houses of worship in New York City history is about to receive a $98.6 million renovation that will partially close the church for nearly two years," says New York YIMBY. "Trinity Church has long been a landmark to the Financial District, which is why the Church Leadership considers the project vital.... The Chapel of All Saints and the churchyard will remain open. The churchyard is where many historical figures are buried, including Eliza Schuyler and Alexander Hamilton, Robert Fulton, and Albert Gallatin. The renovation will make the church building completely ADA accessible, and will also expand the seating space, adding 140 new seats to the congregation. ....Church services are being moved to Saint Paul's Chapel, as had been done the last two times the congregation was without a building. The majority of the process will be finished by the spring of 2020, when the nave will reopen." For the complete article, click here.

"FiDi's Next Restaurant With a View Comes from Ambitious Former NoMad Chef," Eater.com, 5/11/18. "The former executive chef of the Michelin-starred NoMad is opening restaurants on a whopping five different floors of a FiDi tower - including ones on upper levels that will likely sport some insane views," says Eater.com. "Chef James Kent, who spent nearly a decade working under Daniel Humm, has partnered up with Del Posto manager Jeff Katz for the massive new project at the historic Art Deco tower at 70 Pine St., at Pearl Street. The two will be operating restaurants on the ground floor of the property, as well as on the 62nd, 63rd, 64th, and 66th floors, according to a liquor license application to Manhattan Community Board 1." For the complete article, click here.

"Excavation Begins For 45 Broad Street, Downtown's First Residential Supertall," New York YIMBY, 5/9/18. "Construction is well underway for what will eventually become the Financial District's tallest residential tower, a 64-story supertall at 45 Broad Street," says New York YIMBY. "Trucks are currently removing debris from the site, and reports indicate that concrete trucks are also moving in and out, indicating that excavation is now in full swing. Drilling for the foundational piers has already started. ... The 1,115-foot tall structure will yield 407,480 square feet of residential space, with 62,000 square feet dedicated to the commercial-retail use and 93,900 square feet dedicated to a school. 206 apartments are expected." For the complete article, click here





Downtown bulletin board
fishes MEET THE FISHES; FREE FRIDAYS AT THE SOUTH STREET SEAPORT MUSEUM; NYC FERRY SUMMER SCHEDULE; POETRY WALK TICKETS  
 
Hudson River Park, which extends for four and a half miles between Chambers Street and West 59th Street, employs a horticultural staff but also depends on volunteers to tend the park's gardens. (Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)
 
 
Volunteer gardeners in Hudson River Park: Hudson River Park needs volunteer gardeners, and there are several ways to participate. The Neighborhood Gardener Program allows volunteers to work in their own neighborhoods, planting, pruning, weeding and mulching under the guidance of the park's horticultural staff. Opportunities are available on weekdays from 9 a.m. to noon between April and November. This program  entails a minimum commitment of six hours a month. The HRP Green Team meets on Saturdays, once a month. Locations and activities vary each month. Volunteers are invited to participate as often as they wish. Upcoming sessions will be on June 9, June 23, July 14 and July 28. For more information about the HRP Green Team, call Tobin Kent at (347) 515-2242. People interested in composting can serve as Compost Ambassadors or Compost Facilitators. The Compost Ambassadors are the public representatives of the park's newly formed Compost Program. The facilitators work alongside horticulturists in the park's Compost Center to maintain and process compost materials. For more information about becoming a Hudson River Park volunteer, click here.
 
Brooklyn Bridge Poetry Walk: The annual and much-anticipated poetry walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to benefit Poets House in Battery Park City takes place on Monday, June 11. The walk from Manhattan to Brooklyn includes several stops along the way to hear poetry readings, this year from poets Sophie Cabot Black, Tina Chang, Willie Perdomo and Patricia Smith, as well as from special guest Bill Murray. In Brooklyn, there will be more readings, accompanied by wine, dinner and dessert inside a beautiful, historic foundry in DUMBO. All proceeds benefit Poets House's library, public programs and class trips for children and teens. Time: 6 p.m. (Walk begins in Manhattan, near One Centre St.); 8 p.m. (Seated dinner at 26 Bridge St. in DUMBO). Tickets: $300; $275 (Poets House members). All but $75 of each ticket is tax deductible. For more information, call Christina at (212) 431-7633, email christina@poetshouse.org or click here.

Governors Island is open for the season: Governors Island is open daily. From Monday to Thursday, the hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This season, for the first time, the Island will be open until 10 p.m. every Friday night. On Saturdays and Sundays, the Island is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Ferries to and from Governors Island leave from the Battery Maritime Building at 10 South St. and from Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 6. For ferry schedules and fees, click here.

Meet the Fishes: On Tuesday, June 5, The River Project, a marine science field station, celebrates its annual "Meet the Fishes" at its Wetlab in Hudson River Park. Water from the Hudson River flows into the Wetlab, where visitors can see some of the creatures of the Hudson River including seahorses, blackfish, oysters and diamondback terrapin turtles, courtesy of The Turtle Conservancy. During "Meet the Fishes," divers will jump into the Hudson and return with what they find. In addition, there will be opportunities to observe plankton at a microscope station and to touch tiny invertebrates swimming in one of the Wetlab's tanks. There will also be refreshments and raffle prizes. Place: Pier 40 at Houston and West Streets. Time: 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Free. For more information, click here.

Free Fridays at the South Street Seaport Museum: The South Street Seaport Museum's exhibits at 12 Fulton Street and historic ships at Piers 16 and 17 will be free every Friday from July 6 to Sept. 22, 2018 between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. For more information about the South Street Seaport Museum, click here.

Sailing Camp in North Cove: North Cove Sailing in Battery Park City's North Cove Marina offers full-day and half-day summer sailing camps for kids from ages 7 to 17. Sign up before June 1 to get 15 percent off seasonal pricing. For more information, click here, call (212) 766-4302 or email kidscamp@northcovesailing.com.

Summer NYC Ferry schedules: The NYC Ferry summer schedules went into effect on Monday, May 21. Currently there are four ferry routes: East River, Astoria, South Brooklyn and Rockaway. Routes to Soundview and the Lower East Side are expected to launch later this summer. The fare, like that on the subway, is $2.75, subsidized by the City. For more information, 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.


 



calendar CALENDAR: May 2018  
Spotlight: New York Harbor beckons

During a harbor cruise on the South Street Seaport Museum's 1885 schooner Pioneer, members of the public are invited to join the crew in raising the sails.
(Photo: Terese Loeb Kreuzer)

The days are getting longer, sailboats can count on some wind and kayakers need not fear the spray of New York Harbor because the water has warmed up to a friendly temperature. We New Yorkers are island dwellers. It's time for us to get on or in a boat. Here are some possibilities:
 
May 26: Pioneer, the 1885 schooner belonging to the South Street Seaport Museum, begins its seasonal public sails of New York Harbor on May 26. Pioneer is the oldest sailboat still taking the public on regular sailing trips of the harbor. In the days before paved roads, small coastal schooners such as Pioneer were the delivery trucks of their era, carrying cargo of various kinds between coastal communities: lumber and stone from the islands of Maine, brick on the Hudson River, and oyster shell on the Chesapeake Bay. Almost all American cargo sloops and schooners were wood, but because Pioneer was built in what was then this country's center of iron shipbuilding, Pioneer has a wrought-iron hull. She was the first of only two cargo sloops built of iron in this country, and is the only iron-hulled American merchant sailing vessel still in existence. Pioneer tickets include free admission to the Museum's exhibitions. Choose the afternoon special when selecting your trip and then bring your ticket to the Museum before or after your sail. Museum tours leave every half hour starting at 11:30 a.m. Be sure to arrive with ample time before your sail if you wish to visit the museum before your trip. On May 26, May 27 and May 28, Pioneer sails from Pier 16 in the South Street Seaport at 1 p.m.; 4 p.m.; and 7 p.m. Click here for other dates and times and tickets. 
 
The Downtown Boathouse on Pier 26 in Hudson River Park has begun its season of free public kayaking in the Hudson River. The Downtown Boathouse is an all-volunteer nonprofit organization dedicated to providing free public access to the harbor in New York City through public kayaking programs. The Downtown Boathouse offers free sit-on-top kayaks for public use in protected Hudson River embayments throughout the season (May-October). The Boathouse provides brief instruction plus all necessary safety equipment as well as changing rooms, lockers and locks, bike locks, sun block, and first aid equipment. Place: Pier 26 at North Moore and West Streets. Weekends and holidays:  May 20 to Oct. 9. Time: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursdays evenings:  Jun 20 to Sept. 14, 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Last boat goes out half an hour before closing. The Downtown Boathouse also offers free kayaking on Governors Island beginning on June 16. For more information, click here

June 7: Take a Hidden Harbor tour of the Brooklyn Waterfront, Past and Present, under the auspices of the Working Harbor Committee, which produces maritime educational programs, boat tours and community events such as the annual Great North River Tugboat Race. Tour eight miles of Brooklyn's waterfront from Newtown Creek to Sunset Park, an area once filled with manufacturing, shipping and commerce. Though apartment towers and landscaped parks now capture attention, Brooklyn still retains active trade and maritime businesses. Highlights of the narrated tour include the Brooklyn Navy Yard, the City's new recycling facility at Gowanus Bay and the working rail-to-barge connection at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. Place: The boat departs from NY Waterway pier 79 at West 39th Street and 12th Avenue in Manhattan. Time: Boarding begins at 5:45 p.m. The boat leaves at 6:15 p.m. Tickets: $35; $30 (seniors). For more information and to buy tickets, click here.  
 
For the complete calendar of Battery Park City events between May and August, click here.


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



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Editor: Terese Loeb Kreuzer

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