Reports the Real Deal: "At 17,275 square feet and 14,800 square feet, respectively, the two lots have a combined maximum floor-to-area ratio of 241,204 square feet, making them a ripe prospect for residential or commercial development."
This is the latest in an ever lengthening list of blue-collar businesses that have vanished in the shadow of the High Line--some bought out and some forced out--including: the 10th Avenue Tire Shop, the Chelsea Mobil gas station, the Olympia Parking Garage, the Bear Auto Body Shop, the warehouse for Kamco building materials, and the third-generation Brownfeld Auto.
The Central Iron & Metal scrap yard has been recycling and "conserving for tomorrow" since 1927. A ghost sign of their name is (was?) painted on the High Line's flank.
|From the history of "NYC's Original Recycler."|
I've been watching the scrap yard for a few years now, taking its photo, waiting for it to go. Looking at it, you knew it would never last, not once the second part of the High Line opened right over it, giving tourists a verboten view of ugly old industrial New York. Not once the condo towers started rising all around it, their residents complaining about everything that came before they arrived. It was only a matter of time.
This may not seem like an important loss. (Personally, I like a scrap yard. I love those machines with the big magnets and the grabby bits that move the scrap from one pile to another. I could watch them all day.) But it is important because it's been in business for 86 years and it's one of the last remaining pieces of a neighborhood that has been gobbled up by the High Line and the massive hyper-gentrification it helped to create, including Bloomberg's rezoning of the "Special West Chelsea District," an area that had once been a thriving light-industrial zone, now being bulldozed for luxury housing and retail, the connecting link between MePa and the wicked Hudson Yards scheme.
Of course the scrap yard had to go. Such indelicate things don't belong in Manhattan anymore.
Aside from doing the valuable work of recycling metal, the scrap yard also served another purpose. I believe it was a bulwark between the High Liners and Folsom East, as well as the Eagle bar, located on the same block. Having a bit of rough-and-tumble, like a scrap yard with its imposing corrugated walls and junkyard dog warnings, helped to protect that block from infiltrators. Who wants to live next to a scrap yard? (Eh, who am I kidding? Condos will go anywhere.)
With the scrap yard gone--and with massive Avalon West Chelsea rising across the street, plus the existing condo dwellers starting to get cocky--I'll be even more worried about the future of Folsom and the Eagle.
This little block of West 28th Street is getting tighter by the minute.
Disney World on the Hudson
West 28th Lot
Folsom East and The Eagle
Folsom East Responds
Folsom Fights On
Folsom Under High Line
Eagle Under Siege