I walked by this demolition the other day on 3rd Ave and 22nd St. and snapped a few shots of this sad little staircase to nowhere. Something about that banister felt poetic, sentimental. Maybe it's the way it's been exposed, how buildings in their destruction reveal their vulnerable interiors. Part of me wanted to cover it with a blanket.
The three-story brick buildings that stood here have been coming down for the past weeks and the blog Welcome to Murraytown has better photos of the demolition in process. Google Maps' streetview, for now, has very clear pictures of what used to be here.
What will come to replace them is a 20-story luxury condo tower. What creeps me out about their marketing copy is the way they sell its supposed proximity to the East Village. But 100 times even creepier? Look closely at this latest rendering:
Do you see the little brick low-rises that are being consumed by the gigantic tower? Not just cantilevered over, as originally planned, they have been totally engulfed, like prey in the belly of The Blob.
The two below will survive, but the neighboring teal balconies appear marked for death.
google maps: all pics on my flickr
How did the condo developers manage such a monstrosity? Here's the story. About those little holdouts, maybe the developers feel the way Peck-Moss does about the tenement being swallowed by their Cooper Square Hotel: "Mr. Moss says he considers it an asset that guests in the $100 million hotel, which opens this summer, may peer down on a tenement roof where laundry is being hung out to dry. 'That’s the kind of thing people want to see,' he said." (He's talking about the home of Hettie Jones.)
We are ants in the heat of a sadistic child's magnifying glass, something to be gawked at and consumed and stepped over.
The Blob could be a metaphor for the way many of us feel every day as the new New York encroaches and devours. But it's not a metaphor. It's the sickening reality.