THE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF LOWER MANHATTAN | Volume 17 • Issue 43 | March 18 — 24, 2005

Inside
Letter from the editor
Finding the best use for Pier 40
As we wait and hope for the governor, mayor and the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation to give the green light for money to build the Tribeca section of the Hudson River Park, just to the north we have concerns about the park’s Pier 40. A new marketing study for the pier seems to cover some of the same ground from the pier’s failed development process in 2003.

Letters to the editor

Under Cover

Police Blotter


Downtown Express photo by Ramin Talaie
Irish family exhibit
U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney got ready for St. Patrick’s Day last weekend with a sneak peak of “An Irish Family in America,” an exhibit set to open at the Lower East Side Tenement Museum on Orchard St. Last week Maloney and Ruth Abram, the museum’s founder and president, announced that $121,250 in federal funds will be allocated to the exhibit. Tenement museum officials say that the project, which will focus on a specific Irish immigrant family in New York City, will be the first of its kind.


TALKING POINT
2008 field may already be narrowing down to Clinton
By ANDY GLASS
In every presidential election since 1952, either a serving president or vice president has been on the ballot. Incumbency brings with it no guarantee of victory, but it does mean that over a span of more than five decades either the Republican or the Democratic candidate for the Oval Office could offer voters a sense of continuity with policies in place and with familiar political personalities.

The Penny Post
A look at another downtown
By Andrei Codrescu
There may be nothing more eerie than a chiming ice cream truck on a Saturday morning in Downtown Birmingham, Alabama. Not a soul on the street, except for a homeless man in the distance leaning against the freshly scraped façade of an old building with empty storefront windows. The life that once agitated here must have been ether-ised or buried below the sidewalks.

Youth

Local schools unite to help tsunami victims
By Michael White
When last winter’s southern Asian tsunami struck, the devastating effects were felt all over. While monumental efforts to provide international relief have been covered in the media, students at P.S. 89, 150 and 234 are offering their own help to victims of the tsunami by selling multicolored rubber bracelets inscribed with this simple message: “We Care.”

P.S. 20 fair

Why parents need a neighborhood middle school
By Angela Benfield
Last year was a very stressful year for our family. We had no idea which direction our future was headed. This was because my daughter was in fifth grade, and we did not know which middle school she was going to attend.

Youth Activities

Community hears from Downtown construction czar
By Ronda Kaysen
“Lower Manhattan has been a phoenix many times, it will be a phoenix again,” Charles Maikish, the new construction czar for Lower Manhattan’s mammoth reconstruction projects, told Community Board 1 members at a recent introductory meeting. “The future has great things in store for Lower Manhattan.”

Still vacant, after all these years
By Amanda Kludt
Vladeck Houses, a 24-building complex on the Lower East Side, has 518 vacant apartments — the most vacancies of any public housing development in the city — even as there are 136,944 people on the waiting list for New York City public housing.

Downtown Express photo by Elisabeth Robert

Who says there’s no flexibility at City Hall? Jill Conner, a Tribeca resident, put that notion to rest Wednesday as she did pushups with her trainer, Tiger Loup, at City Hall Park.


Debate over Downtown money
By Josh Rogers
How much Lower Manhattan Development Corporation money will be used for the World Trade Center memorial and cultural center and how much will be left for the rest of Downtown? There are no answers yet to either question and as a result, a report outlining the best uses for about $800 million in Downtown community money may be delayed a few weeks past Gov. George Pataki’s March 31 deadline.

Inside Downtown Express

Parents bring middle school zoning issues to C.B. 1
By Ronda Kaysen
Tensions over creating a new middle school for Battery Park City children flared up at a recent Community Board 1 meeting when several P.S. 89 parents voiced their desire to zone a middle school nearby for their children.

Education council looks for middle school imporvements
By Zachary Roy
Members of the District 2 Community Education Council discussed a possible zoned middle school in Lower Manhattan and listened to presentations about the Middle School Application process last Thursday at their monthly Working Business Meeting, attended by about 40 parents, at the Region 9 Operations Center in Manhattan.

A less noisy ‘Western Front’ at P.S. 234

New Caring Community head will raise bar, and funds
By Ed Gold
One of his earliest challenges was finding his way to his new office, muses Arthur Makar, who recently was named to the challenging position of executive director at Caring Community, the important service operation since 1973 for older adults in Greenwich Village and Lower Manhattan.

Ratner’s rest in peace


Firm dips its toes in Seaport waters
By Ronda Kaysen
South Street Seaport may soon get some serious attention. General Growth Properties, the retail giant that acquired the property last year, has been making the rounds with various city and community officials and may unveil plans for the area as early as this summer.

Housing rally in Battery Park City

‘RENT’ returns Downtown to mixed reviews
By Lincoln Anderson
“RENT,” the musical about East Village squatters, came home to the neighborhood that was its inspiration for a week of filming for a new movie version. By most accounts, it was one of the most massive film shoots the area has seen in recent memory. Towering cranes with lights blazingly illuminated entire building facades at night and residents reported more streets than usual being closed off.

Lil’ Kim faces the jury
The federal court perjury trial of the rapper Lil’ Kim (Kimberly Jones) in connection with the February 2001 shooting in front of 395 Hudson St., where the radio station Hot 97 is located, went to the jury on Tues. March 15.


Arts Downtown

Arts, the vanguard to reshape Downtown
By Tim Lavin
At the Equitable Building, the WWI-era towering skyscraper at 120 Broadway, there is something special happening on the 31st floor. It strikes you as soon as you step off the elevator and notice the quotes scrawled in colored chalk all over the walls. They come from artists, writers, philosophers and, one — “Art is making something out of nothing and selling it”—comes from Frank Zappa.

Sports
Cougars coast in rematch with Greenwich Village team
By Zachary Roy
The I.S. 89 Cougars extended their remarkable record to 13-1 Thursday at home with their second victory Greenwich Village Middle School in as many weeks.


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