Lately there's been talk about the QueensWay project, which would convert the inactive right of way of the Long Island Rail Road Rockaway Beach Branch to a pedestrian and bicycle trail. Advocates compare the idea to the High Line in Manhattan, complete with food stands along the way.
Both QueensWay and the High Line involve former rail rights of way but, functionally, they are very different.... » more
On the stairway leading out of the Fulton Street station, in the financial heart of the richest nation in the world, a tiny woman lay under a heap of blankets.
My husband and I walked past her with our 7-year-old son, Ivan.
"Maybe she's dead," Ivan said calmly.
Something about her motionless form, and the incomprehensible stillness of a body lying in such an uncomfortable position... » more
President Barack Obama gave a characteristically bloodless response to questions Monday about the IRS targeting conservative groups. It would be the signature mistake of his second term if he lacks the passion for getting to the bottom of this unfolding scandal. This is not a Republican or Democratic issue, it's one that goes directly to our faith in government.
The IRS has to be absolutely... » more
Let's give City Councilman Daniel Dromm of Jackson Heights the benefit of the doubt. Let's assume he's just an idealist who thinks immigrants who've legally lived and worked in the city for six months have earned the right to vote in our municipal elections. The problem is, his motivations don't matter.
The idea is terrible.
It's unworkable. The New York City Board of Elections can't... » more
I remember the first street fair I ever went to. I had just moved to Manhattan and it appeared one morning on a closed-down stretch of Broadway across from my building. I thought it was fantastic. There was a ton of food, music and a bunch of vendors selling everything from tweezers to glass beads to those retro-looking tin signs praising coffee.
I remember the second street fair I ever went... » more
I love being a sidewalk gardener in Manhattan. Whenever I'm tending the large planter box outside my West Village building, people smile, stop to chat, and thank me for making the block look beautiful. Like dogs or babies, colorful flowers inspire people to drop their guard and be friendly.
To the tourists, I'm a source of information, an ambassador of good will. To the locals, I'm that obsessive... » more
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has warned the feds that four Brooklyn hospitals will have to shut down unless the state gets immediate permission to use money from expected Medicaid savings to keep them open. In all, he wants more than $1 billion for hospitals in poor communities.
Let's start with the easy stuff first.
Federal Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius should say yes immediately.
Whatever... » more
Water Street urgently needs a post-Sandy face-lift.
It was once part of a lower Manhattan neighborhood that had a "certain elegant dinginess," as philanthropist and businessman David Rockefeller has noted -- a place, he recalled, where bankers and longshoremen regularly rubbed elbows "because all of us were in the same business: trade." That world vanished in the 1960s.
Century-old... » more
The city's bike-share program is launching this month with 6,000 three-gear bicycles stationed at 330 sites in Manhattan and Brooklyn, a welcome amenity in the heart of America's most densely packed population center.
The bikes won't burn fossil fuel. They're a stunning way to enjoy New York's splendid waterfronts and parks. They don't clog traffic. They get you where you want to go on 700... » more
In a recent episode of HBO's "Girls," Hannah decided to put Cafe Grumpy's trash into a neighboring brownstone's bin, much to the chagrin of its owner. I know how he felt -- the same thing happened to me.
Well, OK, there was no coffee shop and no apologetic employee willing to jump into my bed. Just someone else's mixed-up garbage in front of my brownstone -- and a ticket from the sanitation... » more