Volume 21, Number 42 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | Feb. 29 - March 6, 2009


Letters to the Editor

Glowing review

To The Editor:
Re “He who builds with glass bricks may do it in Tribeca” (news article, Feb. 20 – 26):

The design drawings I have seen for Joseph Pell Lombardi’s proposed new building at 401-403 Greenwich St. are stunning. The large arched upper windows and other facade details are classical and the interiors look to be spacious and unique. The glass brick concept for the structure is interesting and would be particularly beautiful at night when the interior lights would give the building a glowing effect.

The design would also seem to offer a unique experience to those dwelling or working inside the building. It would likely feel as if the tones of the city are surrounding you instead of plain walls.

A comment from one board member was that there is “a really thin line between really artistic and really cute.” Really? The same thing might be said about criticism. In an era when developers like Donald Trump can come into an area of historic importance and totally change and dominate the skyline, this design comes off as respectful to the neighborhood. What a nice change.

I only hope Mr. Lombardi calls me to take the photos of the construction. I mean -- photography is all about light too!
Lawrence White

City helpful on Chatham Sq.

To The Editor:
Re “Council pokes holes in Chatham Sq. plan” (news article, Feb. 13 –19):

This article includes unauthorized quotes by Brian Ketcham regarding his analysis of the Chatham Square street realignment plan. Community Board 3 has hired Ketcham as a traffic consultant to analyze and report back to the board regarding the proposed plan for Chatham Square and possible modifications that might improve the plan. Ketcham’s personal opinions were unfortunately tied to the work being done for C.B. 3. 

C.B. 3’s transportation chair and district manager have been in constant communication with the Dept. of Transportation and the mayor’s office regarding information supplied for analysis since the end of October.  There was a slow start in gathering information, but since the flow of information started, there has been constant deliverables along with updates to the board. The transportation chair has been managing the technical aspect of this work, and he does not have any complaints or disagreements with what has been supplied.

Regarding some of the specific issues that Ketcham has been researching, the city very quickly supplied information about street configuration for traffic simulation models.  C.B. 3 has as much detail about bridge detours as exists today, more is expected in the coming months as plans are developed by contractors, and this is perfectly reasonable.  The city actually reactivated a contract to gather better pedestrian counts data at Chatham Square at C.B. 3’s request.

This has been a very challenging  project for all. We can best accomplish our objectives by focusing on the modifications that we think will better serve community needs. The work by the taskforce, agencies, and Ketcham has all been very productive.
Dominic Pisciotta
Chairperson, Community Board 3

POSTED to downtownexpress.com
“City willing to reverse school selections in 2010” (news article, posted Feb. 19):

Where does one sign up for Mr. Bacon’s on-line petition? If the Kindergarten lottery will be anything like last year’s Pre-K lottery then the parents in Tribeca/Battery Park have much to be concerned about. The NYC DOE has repeatedly proved itself to be an inept bureaucracy. Unfortunately, it is our children who must suffer at the DOE’s incompetent hands. The parents of NYC school children need to band together in a much stronger manner and let our elected officials hear us loud and clear. Remember, the politicians and the fools at the DOE are all civil servants whose salaries are paid by our tax $’s.

Here here to the last comment. The Dept. of Ed. clearly seems to care less about the parents concerns and are choosing mayhem over simple logical solutions. The truth is that the people at the Dept. of Ed. are just plain old lazy. If their ignorant decisions affected their own children I am certain that there would be different decisions.

“A little sense, safety and peace for Chatham Square” (editorial, Feb. 19):

This plan to redesign Chatham Square needs to be stopped in its tracks. The designers are using an irrelevant Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that was used for the NYPD Security Plan in 2007. That particular EIS included the definite blockage of Park Row “forever”, as a “mitigation”. That EIS also had no Pedestrian/Vehicular study which would be essential for any reconfiguration of Chatham Square - safety first! That EIS also concluded that there was definite damage to business caused by the NYPD’s Security Plan, including parking permit abuse which still exists. However, there is nothing in the new plan to deal with business losses due to 4-5 years of construction. The Lower Manhattan Development Corp violated its contract by not even posting its plans at the public library - not even at the Chatham Square Branch Library! In this time of recession, the LMDC, NYPD and DOT have to put the brakes on this project, it stinks and portends only Nonsense, Danger and Noise.
Chinatown Borne





Downtown Express is published by Community Media LLC. | 145 Sixth Avenue, New York, NY 10013 |
Phone: (212) 229-1890 | Fax: (212) 229-2790 | Advertising: 646-452-2465 © 2009 Community Media, LLC

Wirtten permission of the publisher must be obtained before
any of the contents of this newspaper, in whole or in part,
can be reproduced.