downtownexpress.com
Volume 19 | Issue 24 | Oct. 27 - Nov. 2, 2006

Under Cover

Spooky Symposiums
While updating Community Board 1 members last week on improvements at the New York Downtown Hospital, CEO Dr. Bruce Logan pointed out the creepy prescience of the hospital’s Emergency Preparedness Symposiums.

On Sept. 8, 2003, Dr. David Applebaum came to the first-annual symposium to talk about how his hospital in Jerusalem prepared itself to treat the victims of terrorist attacks. The next day, the doctor and his daughter, Naava, were killed by a suicide bomber in Jerusalem the night before her wedding.

Then, in March of 2005, the hospital booked its speakers for the Sept. 12, 2005 symposium on natural disasters. One of the seminars was to feature doctors from Louisiana, talking about what might happen if a catastrophic flood ever struck New Orleans. Katrina hit on Aug. 29.

Considering that this year’s symposium focused on the possibility of a bird flu pandemic, UnderCover can only hope that the hospital has locked its crystal ball in a medical storeroom far, far away.

Careless Construction
Neighbors of 200 Chambers St. are praying to the Great Pumpkin that the building’s exterior will be completed sometime soon. That’s because the construction crews at Scott Resnick’s 29-story residential tower have been particularly rude and careless of late.

Perhaps in a rush to finish, crews have been spotted tossing debris over the sidewalk and onto a truck. Wires, cigarettes and splintered wood have spilled out onto the sidewalk from behind the plywood pedestrian wall and other debris has made its way onto West St. For a time last week, part of the plywood wall was removed, turning female pedestrians into human entertainment for crowds of cat-calling crew members.

The tower’s residential units are scheduled for move-in in spring 2007.

Love seats
Hudson River Park Trust president Connie Fishman says she has learned to sail through the rough waters of community board meetings. When a member of Community Board 1’s Waterfront Committee interested in the Tribeca piers said he did not mean to disparage the Trust, Fishman quipped, “We can take it. We’ve had C.B. 2 all of these years.” The Village board opposed the construction of the park years ago and more recently has knocked the Trust’s plans and lack thereof to bring in a developer to Pier 40. Speaking of Pier 40, we understand L.A.-based furniture retailer H.D. Buttercup has it’s eye on Manhattan’s left coast and wants a mere 500,000 square feet of store space in the pier. Note to The Trust, which doesn’t want “big-box” retail on the pier: Even Sam Walton would have said that’s big.

Let them eat flan
Folks partaking of the chic Greek cuisine at Thalassa (179 Franklin St.) over the weekend had no need to consult a dessert menu—they ordered the orange flan. That’s because when the waiter pitched the special, harvest-colored confection, he didn’t talk about the rich, caramelized custard or the garnish of raspberries, strawberries and starfruit.

Instead, he told diners that proceeds from the sale of the flan would go to feed the hungry as a part of the Food Bank for New York City’s second-annual “Go Orange” hunger awareness campaign. Already full of high-priced gourmet fare, UnderCover’s stomach began to churn with bourgeois guilt. We ordered the flan at once. Fortunately, the chefs at Thalassa made charity taste very, very sweet.

Sighting…
Harvey Keitel walking in the pouring rain last week at Hudson and Duane Sts., sans umbrella. Seems even movie stars get wet.

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