THE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF LOWER MANHATTAN | Volume 20 Issue 2 | May 25 -31, 2007
Editorial
Deutsche’s oversight needs oversight
The sky is falling after all.
A 15-foot pipe fell off the former Deutsche Bank building last Thursday, crashing into the Ten-Ten firehouse, injuring two of New York’s Bravest across from the World Trade Center site. Luckily no one was seriously hurt and no more firefighters were lost because of 9/11.

Downtown Express photo by Scot Surbeck
River view
Sun reflections on the Hudson gave the mighty river a surreal quality Sunday.

The book on libraries
Andrew Carnegie’s incredible donation over a century ago built the Chatham Square Library in Chinatown and many others across the city and the nation. Back then, neighborhoods like Soho, Tribeca and Battery Park City hadn’t been created, so Lower Manhattan didn’t get any other of these precious jewels. Since then it’s been harder to get libraries built.

The Penny Post
Heart of the Beast
By Andrei Codrescu
I’m flying to Minneapolis-St.Paul nonstop from a half-built future international airport set amid vast empty pastures. There are nonstop flights here to far-flung cities of the earth, and the ticketing machines are programmed to respond in Korean, Japanese, Taglalog, Mandarin, Cantonese.

Talking Point
Meeting the med students who dissected my husband
By Annie Shaver-Crandell 
On the train to Valhalla, N.Y., last Friday, I kept thinking of the lines in Tom Lehrer’s song “Alma”: “The body that reached her embalmer/ Was one that had known how to live.” I was on my way to accept an invitation from Dr. Matthew A. Pravetz — director of the Body Bequeathal Program at New York Medical College — to attend a memorial service, a Convocation of Thanks, given by the students of the Class of 2010.

Letters to the editor

Under Cover

Police Blotter

Downtown Express photo by Lorenzo Ciniglio

Time Equities hopes to knock down this 1912 green-topped building on West St. to build a 63-story condo and hotel building.

Developer plans to knock down West St. ‘copper top’ to build 63 stories
By Skye H. McFarlane
The developer has called it a “shot in the arm for the neighborhood.” More than one Financial District resident has called it a “dangerous precedent.” The chair of Community Board 1 has called it a “huge decision.”

NEWS
Shoppers rush for one last bargain at Ralph’s
By Jennifer Milne
After nearly half a century, the beloved Ralph’s Discount City finally closed its Chambers St. doors on May 18.

Spitzer brokers deal to end W.T.C. insurance dispute
Gov. Eliot Spitzer announced a deal Wednesday for seven insurance companies to pay an additional $2 billion to developer Larry Silverstein and the Port Authority to rebuild the World Trade Center.

1,000 march for gay marriage in Lower Manhattan
By Paul Schindler
A dire weekend weather forecast that revived memories of last year when heavy downpours drenched roughly 1,000 participants made the 2007 Wedding March this past Saturday the smallest in the event’s four-year history.

ARTS
Warren Haynes: Guitar legend of the East Village
By David Callicott
When Warren Haynes was a nine-year-old boy in Asheville, North Carolina, his older brothers brought home the Allman Brothers Band debut album.

EXHIBITIONS
The pain in Spain was not in vain
By Jerry Tallmer
KOSLOW! thou shouldst be living at this hour. Who’d a thunk it? All over New York they’re celebrating — better yet, remembering, or (best of all) learning about — the war you (illegally) sailed from New York to take part in shortly after New Year’s 1937. Seventy years ago.

THEATER
A tale of gentrification all too familiar
By Scott Harrah
The final installment of the late August Wilson’s series of 10 plays about African-Americans in Pittsburgh’s Hill District — where the playwright grew up in real life — depicts the challenges often faced in the name of gentrification, and the ethical dilemmas that arise when the ghetto gets a facelift and developers start tearing down old homes to make way for a luxury high-rises and homogenized franchises like Starbuck’s, Barnes & Noble and Whole Foods.

FILM
Sequel to ‘Night Watch’ casts a new spell
By Rania Richardson
With stunning visual style and a delicious mix of characters — a vampire butcher, a Mongolian horse lord, a punk seductress, and an otherworldly father/son duo fixed in tormented conflict — “Day Watch” is the dazzling sequel and stand-alone thrill ride following the phenomenally successful “Night Watch” (2004) that single handedly revitalized contemporary Russian cinema.

Listen to Downtown Express
Radio on the internet:
Dep. Mayor Daniel Doctoroff talks about Downtown redevelopment, the W.T.C. arts program, Hudson River Park funding and congestion pricing with hosts Josh Rogers and Skye H. McFarlane. Julie Menin, Community Board 1's chairperson, discusses the need for schools and cultural programs Downtown and the new members of the board. (recorded 4/30/07)


NEWS

Pipe crash through firehouse is 6th Deutsche violation in 3 months
By Skye H. McFarlane
As word spread around Lower Manhattan last week that a 15-foot section of steel piping had fallen from the top of the former Deutsche Bank building and crashed through the roof of the 10/10 firehouse next door, the same refrain could be heard over and over in meeting rooms and elevators around the neighborhood.

New chapter in Soho’s story: A library
By Jefferson Siegel
Until this week, Soho residents thirsting for knowledge had to schlep to the Public Library’s New Amsterdam branch on Murray St. or over to the Ottendorfer on Second Ave.  

B.P.C. library in negotiations
The long hoped for library in Battery Park City could open by the end of next year although a construction start date is still unclear.

Love of soccer kick-started his education at B.M.C.C.
By Judith Stiles
When Ohionameh Aregbeyen played soccer in Ibadan, Nigeria, he and his brother Aigboje used a pair of sneakers for goals — or two piles of grass if there were no sneakers.

Little Red school will grow a little bit more
Little Red School House Elisabeth Erwin High School has acquired a 4,000-square-foot townhouse at 42 Charlton St., next to the existing high school, for $4.1 million, according to Danielle Culmone, of Quinn & Co., the broker assisting the transaction.

Muslim cabbies don’t miss stop at 11th St. mosque
By Alyssa Giachino
In the predawn chill of a weekday in early spring, at an East Village mosque the entryway shelves were brimming with the shoes of worshipers. Favored footwear styles were sturdy tennis shoes and dusty work boots, most with well-worn heels.

BOOKS
A new look at Brooke Astor’s life, sans scandal
By Sarah Norris
“To receive, one must give,” wrote Brooke Astor, the acclaimed New York philanthropist and heiress, whose life is the subject of a new biography, “The Last Mrs. Astor” (W.W. Norton), by Frances Kiernan. Now 105, Astor made headlines last year for the lack of care bestowed upon her by her son, Tony Marshall, and though this book touches upon the scandal, its primary concern is tracking a life fully lived.

SPORTS

Majors
Astros vs. Tigers
The Tigers jumped out to an early 2-run lead when leadoff hitterJack Finio singled and scored followed by Jack Hatton who reached after being hit by a pitch.
Cubs vs. Yankees Meeting for the second time this season, the Cubs and Yankees played a high-scoring game May 15.
Yankees vs. Blue Jays The spectators who braved the 8 a.m. call time on an overcast Saturday morning witnessed one of the rarest feats in baseball


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German Federal Archives, Berlin.
Leni Riefenstahl: Up Close and PersonalAuthor Steven Bach discusses his biography of the notorious German filmmaker - who allegedly witnessed massacres of Jews, hired slave laborers as extras in her films, and maintained close personal relationships with many Nazis – on May 30 at the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Above: Riefenstahl is captured in a snapshot at the moment gunfire begins.

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