The only context in which [Times Square] is routinely praised is a historical one, and then usually in a misguided glorification of its former grittiness. Nostalgia clouds the ugliness of the past and conceals the vibrancy of the present, but perhaps worst of all, it offers a pass for looking at Times Square as it really is and as it should be. [...]
if you’re trying to fight your way through the crowds of Times Square, you’re missing the point—the point is the crowd. — observer.com
Beginning on Monday, March 7, 2016, the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office will no longer prosecute most violations or infractions, and the NYPD will no longer arrest individuals who commit these offenses – such as littering, public consumption of alcohol, or taking up two seats on the subway – unless there is a demonstrated public safety reason to do so. This initiative will enable the NYPD to devote its resources to investigating serious crimes... — Manhattanda
New York City once set the standard for subsidized housing. The city started out building and maintaining tens of thousands of apartments for working families, sponsoring job training and social programs. It ran a budget surplus. [...] Now the Village is like a gated playground for runaway wealth. Subsidized apartments all across town are converting to market-rate rentals and condos faster than City Hall can build affordable units or preserve old ones. — nytimes.com
Amid contentious debate on rezonings across the city, the late 2013 hubbub around an upzoning proposal for East Midtown has, for the moment, abated — but hasn’t disappeared. In a bid to spur significant new development for the first time in decades, the de Blasio administration is currently retooling the Bloomberg-era plan to allow developers to construct much larger buildings [...]
Whether this rezoning eventually occurs or not, the buildings in Manhattan’s core aren’t getting any younger. — urbanomnibus.net
It’s hard to grasp his calculus. One of Mr. de Blasio’s big initiatives, Vision Zero, aims to improve pedestrian safety. Ripping up the pedestrian plazas in Times Square, restoring cars and forcing millions of people to dodge traffic again, runs headlong into his own policy.
As an exasperated Tim Tompkins, the president of the Times Square Alliance, put it on Thursday: “Sure, let’s tear up Broadway — we can’t govern, manage or police our public spaces.” — nytimes.com
Still, when Mayor Bill de Blasio today unveiled his plan for New York’s troubled housing authority, NYCHA, dismantling these aging towers was not a piece of it. The plan calls for charging more for parking, redeploying staff to other agencies to save costs and leasing land within the housing complexes to private developers to save money. [...]
So why does New York City still have so many high-rise housing projects? — theatlantic.com
The current ferry plan will cost $55 million, with plans to expand to Coney Island and Stapleton in Staten Island once more money is secured. Additionally, service will be restored to the Rockaway ferry, which was put in place in 2012 after Hurricane Sandy wiped out subway service to the area. — 6sqft
With a nod to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s affordable housing plans, New York City’s Department of City Planning is inventing a “new neighborhood” to take what it thinks is a promising section of the Bronx from parking lots to high-rises. While the city has promised to make community outreach a cornerstone of its plans, the idea of a “new neighborhood” has left many who live there seeing Brooklyn-infused foreshadowing. — nextcity.org
Charles Chawalko, a recent graduate of Parsons’ Design & Urban Ecologies program, is a resident of Southbridge Towers, a 1,651-unit development that remains in the program. But as he explains below, his cooperative is in the midst of a decision over whether it will join the majority of Mitchell-Lama buildings and leave. To residents of Southbridge Towers, the vote over whether to opt out of Mitchell-Lama transcends the citywide conversation on affordable housing [...]. — urbanomnibus.net
Several factors contributed to the library’s decision: a study that showed the cost of renovating the 42d Street building to be more than expected (the project had originally been estimated at about $300 million); a change in city government; and input from the public, several trustees said. (Four lawsuits have been filed against the project.) — nytimes.com
Mayor de Blasio, your idea of a mandate for inclusionary zoning begins to address this crisis yet continues to depend on the tender mercies of private developers to actually produce the units. If you are going to tax them, why not collect the money, municipalize the program, and make gorgeous, genuinely affordable housing your greatest legacy, building it where it's most needed? We can do it! -Michael Sorkin — archrecord.construction.com
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