Friday, January 4, 2013

*Everyday Chatter

Steve Cuozzo: "Just to torment those who weep over every lost 'landmark' of the old Lower East Side: The former Mars Bar site at the corner of Second Avenue and East 1st Street will now become a TD Bank." [NYP]

Is there a chance Mars Bar will be making a comeback? [EVG]

Gallagher's Steak House gets a third life. [MBVNY]

Former Lenox Lounge's new owner says, "the thing needed a shot in the arm. It was really not reaching its potential lately. It was just a local spot that was OK." That's what they said about Bill's Gay 90s, too. Thank goodness we have all these saviors to rescue New York's historic icons from not living up to their full potential. [VV]

Ugly rumor: Big Nick's might be shuttering after 50+ years on the UWS. [MUW]

The gentrification of Brooklyn--in a handy map. [BM]

The wonderfully junky S&P newsstand in Park Slope got a boring facelift. [OMFS]

On the "Myrtle-Beach-ification" of Coney Island. [Brokelyn]

Remembering Sunando Sen--who worked in the East Village before being pushed in front of the subway. [TK]

Now they're trying to beautify sidewalk scaffolding. [Curbed]

Chumley's keeps trying to come back from collapse. [NYT]

Word Up bookstore gets funded. [NYDN]

Revisit Wigstock in 1992. [NY90s]

Visiting some of the last phone booths on the streets of New York. [youtube]

photo: EV Grieve

Rob Hollander at Save the Lower East Side reports that The 11th Street Resistance is taking on 7-11 and you can join the fight: "We're drawing the line of suburbanization here... We have had about enough of chain stores and suburban franchises, Duane Reades, Walgreens and Chase Banks on every corner. We've chosen to fight. Join with us and let's start a city-wide resistance:
(Father's Heart Ministries, btwn A&B)"


Brendan said...

Big Nick's cannot be allowed to close. It is almost single-handedly saving the UWS from complete suckitude at this point. The fact that they haven't announced anything tells me they are fighting, so I'm going to remain hopeful.

It is particularly distressing that the landlord wants to combine three storefronts into one space. It is hard to imagine anything going into such a large space except for a chain clothing store. Perhaps a Banana Republic. After all, the UWS is currently underserved by only two Banana Republics.

I'm very happy to hear about Word Up. Washington Heights has needed a bookstore for a long time.

Little Earthquake said...

Chase and Duane Reade started in NYC. Chain stores are morally neutral.

Jeremiah Moss said...

right, because corporations are not people. but big chains are corporations that are run by people, who are anything but morally neutral.

as for Duane Reade, they don't actually exist anymore. they are owned by Walgreens, the largest chain drugstore in the US, and begun in Chicago.

Anonymous said...

I heard recently that the Pearl Street Diner may not reopen following Hurricane Sandy which caused flood damage. That was one of the last old-time diners left in Manhattan. But a 7-11 will be opening across the street to satisfy everyone's Big Gulp cravings.

Anonymous said...

Weird. I'm in Boston's South End - a neighborhood that had been, until a few years ago, mostly gay men. Now its strollers and frat boys and empty nesters moving in - in droves, from the suburbs, because they've heard its "edgy."

When a 7-11 started its campaign to open in neighborhood that had consisted mainly of warehouses and was now quickly becoming a residential hot-spot, my neighbors (almost all recent emigrees from the burbs) became apoplectic.

They protested the 7-11 - but not because of anything against chain stores or rapid suburbanization of the city, as is happening in NYC. Nope, instead, they protested the -11 becuase it would "attract homeless people and people who buy lottery tickets."

Apparently, they used every euphamism for "poor people," as well. Seems that a 7-11 was seen as too declasse for this neighborhood where they would never even have walked through in broad daylight just 10 years ago. In a neighborhood replete with dog bakeries, severely overpriced restaurants and satellite dress boutiques from the suburbs,they were worried that a 7-11 might attract undesirables, i.e., people not like them.

Has this happened at all in NY or is this just a Boston thing? I'd love to know your thoughts, Jeremiah.

laura said...

anon 12:39pm: where exactly is the pearl street diner? chinatown? les near the bridge? jeremiah: they wouldnt build so many duane reades & banks if they were not used. or would they? do you think its some kind of a tax write off? are these places crowded? have you looked?

Ed said...

This is a fairly old piece (April 2012) and may be off-topic in a random links essay, but its an engrossing essay about what is happening in London, one city that has been experiencing as intense a version of hyper-gentrification as New York:

Ed said...

Anonymous @ 1:33 AM,

We in New York appear to be getting the entitled people coming back from the suburbs, and the 7-11s too, so what you describe may be just a Boston thing.

mch said...

Anonymous on Boston,
Having just returned from Boston to visit my son and daughter-in-law while my husband was at a convention, so I could visit them without invading (as we usually would) their small apartment (though theirs is bigger and cheaper than our daughter's and her husband's in NYC)....
I don't know Boston well at all, no matter how many times I've gone there over the last nearly 40 years living in MA! (I can't help but compare Boston to NYC, to Boston's disadvantage, which I know is NOT fair or right -- just can't help it).
So maybe just because I was in the midst of the Heinz Center and Copley Square and all that, but, gee, I may as well have been at the local mall here in western MA -- no, Boston's was somewhat more upscale than what I can get here, but still. (Also, Newberry Street: no longer so "upper east side" experience, but a series of mall-stops for tourists.)

What Boston may have going for it: more actual industrial or semi-industrial activity in and near the city-center. But comparisons are difficult. NYC and its surrounds are just so much bigger and varied.

Some weird inversion is up in NYC, and maybe also underway in Boston. The city is becoming the suburb, while the suburbs house the industry, the productive work activity?

I like to blame Robert Moses in NYC. I don't know who to blame in Boston.

randall said...

@ At Anon Boston,

If I recall correctly there is a 7/11 on the corner of Washington St. and Mass. Ave. and maybe one near the Back Bay T stop too?

I guess that is kind of at the periphery of the neighborhood and maybe the concern is that they may set up shop IN the neighborhood.

Are you talking about the East Berkley St., Pine St. Inn area?

Laura Goggin Photography said...

I miss Wigstock. Anyone know what's going on with it? Is it still around?

Jeremiah Moss said...

did it sort of get replaced by the Drag Parade?

laura said...

anon 1:33am- the new residents are correct in the south end, boston. 7/11 does attract undesirables. the people you resent dont move there because its "edgy"- dont flatter yourself. they move there because it is a charming area, w/nice traditional buildings. maybe somewhat less $$ than back bay, w/cafes, shops, great resturants etc. i rent a house in mexico, in a place that has turned into inner city. there were corn fields here & horses right in front of the buildings across the court yard. these fields were burnt down, now they are vacant dirty lots w/garbage. they are building a 7/11 right in front of my small gated street. i am glad i dont live facing that, but i will have to pass it walking out & down the street. yes it will attract UN desirables, 24/7. i would rather have the horses, but given a choice- i would take a starbucks kind of place any time. there is little quality of life with 7/11s, kentucky fried, macdonalds, you get the picture.