THE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF LOWER MANHATTAN — Volume 17 • Issue 48 | April 22 — 28, 2005


From the editor
Keeping the housing promise at B.P.C.
Almost 40 years after the Battery Park City master plan called for affordable housing in the planned community that would be built and 16 years after the promise was shifted to require B.P.C. money to be shifted to pay for affordable housing throughout the city, Mayor Mike Bloomberg said Tuesday that government’s word has value and the promise will finally be kept.

Under Cover

Letters to the editor

Talking point
Equity and faith needed in community spending plan
By Daniel H. Bush
Last week the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation released guidelines for how remaining 9/11 Community Development Block Grant money should be spent.

The Penny Post
On the road: Romania (feeling beat)
By Andrei Codrescu
Romanian roads were created by Evil Knievel to give the average person the experience of imminent death. Trucks hurl themselves at you head on while deep holes rattle your bones.

Police Blotter

Downtown scene

News in Brief

Ready to demolish notorious Bowery building

Tribeca back in swing

Identity theft legislation

Immigration forum

Honors for Levenson and Diether

Seaport angel

Ellis Island gates

Gertrude Gomez, 74, longtime Soho crossing guard
By Albert Amateau
Gertrude Gomez, who spent 23 years as a crossing guard at Prince and MacDougal Sts. guiding children to and from St. Anthony of Padua School, died on April 10 at St. Vincent’s Hospital after a short illness at the age of 74.

Action-packed weekend for Downtown Little League

Youth Activities

Kid’s birthday coming up? Look no further…
By Kaitlen Jay Exum
If you’re planning a birthday party for your child and are simply out of ideas, never fear. In a city as diverse as New York, there’s something to keep every tyke and his/her parents happy. And not just the standard balloon-twisting clowns, either. If you’re looking for something just a little bit unusual, you have plenty of options.

More ideas for the next birthday party

‘The Funnies’ – not just for kids anymore
By Aileen Torres
When comic strips are featured just as prominently as Faberge eggs, it’s a clue that strips aren’t just for kids anymore. Not that they ever were.

The Listings

Downtown Express photo by Jennifer Weisbord

Mayor Bloomberg greets a well-wisher Tuesday after he and Comptroller Bill Thompson announced they would use Battery Park City money for affordable housing.

Wils bids farewell to C.B. 1
By Ronda Kaysen
It was a bittersweet farewell for Madelyn Wils, the recently dethroned Community Board 1 chairperson, at the board’s monthly meeting this week.

West St. money debate begins
By Josh Rogers
Gov. George Pataki’s decision last week not to build a tunnel under West St. throws nearly $700 million back in the Downtown rebuilding money pot and opens a new debate on how best to spend it.

Renewing the B.P.C promise
By Josh Rogers
“We are going to keep the promise,” Mayor Mike Bloomberg told cheering housing advocates – the types that usually come to City Hall to protest. “I like this kind of crowd. Come back.”

The gentleman sings like a lady
Master Song Chang Rong, a Peking Opera star, will be demonstrating the art form Saturday at the Museum of Chinese in the Americas in Chinatown. Master Song is one of the last practitioners of Nan-Dan where males play the female roles.

Taste of Chinatown
“Taste of Chinatown 2005” will take place on Saturday, April 23. Over 50 restaurants, bakeries, tea houses and specialty shops in Chinatown will offer $1.00 tasting stations from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Board’s school debate resolved quietly
By Ronda Kaysen
Community Board 1 asked the Dept. of Education to create a new locally zoned middle school Downtown, drawing months of wrangling to a close.

Downtowners flock to Daffy’s opening
By Amanda Kludt
At 1 p.m. last Friday, local residents, workers on their lunch breaks, tourists and New Yorkers from all over the city converged on 50 Broadway and poured through the doors of Daffy’s for its grand opening.

Not fare, says bike taxi owner forced to sell fleet
By Aman Singh
The owner of The Hub Station, gaunt and dressed in rough overalls rolled above the ankle and sporting a mangled mane of hair, stared anxiously at the quickly forming traffic jam on Broome St. leading to the Holland Tunnel.

Glass tower addition draws some critics
By Ronda Kaysen
It's said that people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones. That doesn't mean their neighbors can't lob as many as they want. Neighbors of one glass residential conversion recently took a few shots at an Enrique Norten-designed condo building coming their way.

Downtown business owner receives national award
By Aman Singh
Thirty-seven years ago, just out of active duty with the U.S. army, Brian Drum had no idea what was next. He had no experience except a short stint with a truck company, Same Day/Next Day Delivery, which he headed for two years before leaving for active duty with the National Guard.

Chinatown chess team shines in Nashville
By Aman Singh
The “good ol’ boys and girls” went, played and conquered. The chess team of P.S 42 went to Tennessee for the National Chess Championships and won second place nationwide as a team in the division grade K-8 among teams from 50 nations across the country.

Rubbery remembrances
Each generation is marked with technological nostalgias. At the moment, we shimmer with the sweetness of the small glowing screen, already sappy with a speedy remembrance of “early” Apple computers and Nintendo. Someone should do a study on the turnaround time of nostalgia these days.