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Cheers through rough waters
Technically speaking Michael Fortenbaugh, president of North Cove Management. got a standing ovation Tuesday night but the words of support were more genuine.
You see the only reason so many people were standing this week in the Battery Park City library at Community Board 1’s B.P.C meeting was that there were not enough places to sit. Over 100 supporters of Fortenbaugh’s efforts came to voice their support for him to continue running the marina.
He has run a sailing school at there for 20 years (he opened in at the South Street Seaport in 1987 before moving west) and has been the marina’s man in charge since 2004, in addition to living in B.P.C.
His 10-year lease at the marina is about to expire and he is going to submit a bid to the Battery Park City Authority to continue.
He didn’t appear worried that he would get kicked out, but a source told us there are three other likely bidders including Brookfield Properties, which overlooks the marina and owns what is now called Brookfield Place, although it is still better known as the World Financial Center. The source said the other likely competitors are Island Global Yachting based in Fort Lauderdale and Sun Tex Marina based in Dallas.
The bids are due Oct. 24, and it will likely be at least a few months before the authority picks a winner. Fortenbaugh is hoping to add to the 50 or so letters he has collected in order to submit them as part of his bid.
The C.B. 1 committee appeared to be unanimous in its support for the work Fortenbaugh has done the last 10 years. Jeff Galloway said before 2004, the marina was “not part of us.” Tammy Meltzer and others on the committee pointed to their children who benefited by learning to sail with Fortnbaugh’s youth program.
The committee sounds poised to pass a resolution praising the work Fortenbaugh has done, but is not expected to recommend a selection since it’s unlikely they will be told who the contenders are.
Almost full baked
The highly anticipated opening of the new Baked Tribeca at 279 Church St. is imminent. At least, close — probably opening at the end of this month. At a Tuesday night preview and cookbook launch, the second bakery of founders Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito gave a taste of the glorious baked goods to come: sweet and salty cupcakes, dolly’s doughnuts, peanut butter krispy bars and caramel candy popcorn balls.
“I can’t wait to see who the regulars will be,” said Poliafito, who added that their Red Hook customers come in many times during the day. The Baked Tribeca location will be open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Head baker Molly Marzalek-Kelly is also excited to get to know the customers. She and head decorator Veronika Matunin are relocating to the Tribeca location. Matunin said that all the icing for the goodies and cakes was made from scratch.
The 3,400 sq.ft. Tribeca location was a former “Burlesque” (wink wink) boudoir run perhaps most famously or infamously by Madeleine D’Anthony, and as a nod to that history and the bakery’s name, a huge glowing red letter “B” graces the back wall at the end of the shop. Wood floors offset gray exposed walls and the area where the baking will take place is enclosed in glass so patrons can see the magic at work.
Red and white wine, Sixpoint beer and Stumptown Coffee was served to the soignee crowd and will also be served when the bakery opens. Downstairs, there will be a champagne room decorated with real vintage wedding pictures lining the walls.
Close but no target date
June 26 of course came and went and the Fulton Center is not fully open. The much-touted date was used for some gentle ribbing at Community Board 1’s Financial District Committee meeting Oct. 1.
“I thought the last [time] was the last one, but I think this is pretty much the last one,” said Uday Durg, a senior vice president for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, about presenting to the committee.
Durg was reminded of the date to some laughter.
“You had a grand opening scheduled for last June, right?” said chair Ro Sheffe.
“We’re a few months late, yes,” he said.
Durg, who started on the project in 2002, said that there are few final things that need to be done but that the $1.4 billion project is 99.9 percent complete. An estimated 300,000 people will use the Fulton Center daily.
“From William St. to the A,C mezzanine to the J,Z platform to the 4,5 platforms to the R platforms, everything has to work as one system,” he said. “That’s where the difficulty is.”
Durg didn’t say exactly when it would open. “In the next couple of weeks I think you will know an exact date,” he said. “But I’m telling you, we’re very, very close to that date.”
He said there are more than 300 cameras located throughout the center and that a person who traverses it will be photographed six or seven times.
On the day the Fulton Center opens, Durg said, so will the Dey St. Concourse, an underpass that will connect the 4,5 to the R at Cortlandt St.
“That’s a huge announcement,” said Catherine McVay Hughes, C.B.1’s chairperson, who led the applause.