Volume 23, Number 9 | The Newspaper of Lower Manhattan | July 9 - 15, 2010
Winter Garden Staircase is Cursed
The majestic marble staircase at the Winter Garden in the World Financial Center, which was completely redone after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, might be taken down, yet again.
Brookfield Properties and City Planning might do away with the World Financial Center’s Winter Garden in order to make room for an entrance to the pedestrian tunnel linking the Winter Garden with the new W.T.C. transportation center.
“I’m afraid that in August they’ll make a decision [without community input] and we’ll start World War 6,” said C.B. 1 Battery Park City Chair Linda Belfer. The Committee decided to draft a resolution that asks Brookfield and City Planning to have some say in the decision before they make it.
The resolution might even state the Committee’s wish that the staircase be preserved, since everyone is apparently in favor of it. “I don’t know anyone that’s not opposed to taking down the staircase,” one Community Board member said, certain that the full board will ratify the motion.
Meanwhile, Brookfield Properties is seemingly snubbing the B.P.C. Committee, pulling a no-show to the last two B.P.C. Committee meetings that it was explicitly invited to.
Should Have Been Correct at Start
Come August, NYPL’s Battery Park City branch will actually be “fully accessible to wheelchairs,” as it advertises on its website.
New automatic doors at the Battery Park City Branch will be installed in 6 to 8 weeks, according to an NYPL representative who spoke at Tuesday’s C.B. 1 Battery Park City meeting at One World Financial Center.
When NYPL inherited the building, the doors, while ADA compliant, were not automatic. So folks in wheelchairs would need to ring the bell and wait for an NYPL staff person to open the door.
“When we first looked into whether we could motorize the doors, we were told the current doors could NOT become motorized without major construction that would close the branch,” said Angela Montefinise, NYPL public relations manager. Upon further examination, the library found a way to do it without interruption of library service.
The doors were previously The representative said that the inner and outer doors need to be retrofitted, and that construction should take two days, maximum.
The Community Board was very pleased with the news. “That’s wonderful,” said C.B. 1 Battery Park City Chairperson Linda Belfer. “Maybe they realize that it should have been that way in the first place.
“It doesn’t hurt to ask for things,” Belfer added. “When you ask, you frequently get.”