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Thread: Fulton Street

  1. #16
    The Dude Abides
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    Downtown Express

    Volume 19 • Issue 13 | August 11 - 17, 2006

    City looks to Fulton and beyond in East Side plan



    By Janet Kwon

    The city has expanded long-awaited plans to add park space and better storefronts to Fulton St., although construction on all parts of the project will not begin for several years.

    Amanda Burden, chairperson of the Dept. of City Planning, though, told Downtown Express that things are “moving very very rapidly,” now that the money has been approved by the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development.

    The $38 million plan will begin an environmental review this fall, and while construction for certain elements of the plan is slated to begin fall 2007, construction for other parts may not start until 2009.

    In addition to refurbishing the length of Fulton St., the updated plans now include renovating streets that sprout from Fulton — Nassau, William, Gold, Cliff, Pearl and John Sts. Fulton St. is being extended through the World Trade Center site, which will make the street the only direct connection between Battery Park City and the East River.

    “Honestly, when you’re on Broadway, you’re not invited to walk down the street — it’s not inviting to walk down Fulton,” Burden said in a telephone interview. But after the storefronts and sidewalks are revamped and new lighting is added, “it should be one of the most fabulous walks in the city and it will be.”


    City Planning images of the plan to improve the area around Fulton St.


    In a presentation to Community Board 1’s Seaport/Civic Center Committee, Keith O’Connor, a Lower Manhattan senior planner with City Planning, told the board members and residents that in addition to these streetscape improvements, building facades along a stretch of Fulton St. will also be restored and improved. Construction for this phase of the project will likely begin in 2009.

    “Construction will be phased based on the completion of the environmental review and ULURP (Uniform Land Use Review Procedure), as well as to coordinate construction with the other various projects planned for Fulton St. — transit hub, W.T.C. site and other streetscape improvements,” said Rachaele Raynoff, a City Planning spokesperson.

    Also, the current Fulton St. plan boasts a new playground at Burling Slip, which will be designed by Rockwell Group, who will be working on the project pro bono. Construction for this playground, as well as upgrades and enhancements for the existing Pearl St. playground and the Titanic Memorial Park near Water St. is predicted to begin late 2007. The city had planned to build an apartment building on the Pearl St. playground but changed the plan after C.B. 1 raised objections.

    Rockwell Group presented their ideas and philosophy behind creating a “play space” in Burling Slip that both parents and children can enjoy. However, because this was the first time the community was presented with this idea, the firm waited for community response before beginning the design process.

    In addition to $38 million from the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation (approved by HUD), City Department of Transportation is also dedicating $5 million of its Federal Highway Administration funds to the project.

    The community reaction to Burling Slip was positive, with the general consensus being that the neighborhood needs more space for children to play. It will take at least 18 months to begin construction on the playground, said Lawrence Mauro, a project manager for the City Department of Parks and Recreation. The 215-ft. by 70-ft. playground will be funded with the $38 million L.M.D.C. money, and Rockwell Group said they are exploring ways to raise private funds to match public funds for the project.

    Committee member Linda Roche wondered if certain parts of the plan would suffer to make way for the updates of the plan.

    O’Connor answered Roche with a resounding “no,” and assured her that the agencies involved are doing the most they can with the money they have.

    “I’m taking him at his word,” Roche said of O’Connor’s response. “I’m just happy to see that they’re working on it… the park over at Burling Slip will be a great amenity to the community,” she added.

    Board member Marc Donnenfeld, however, feels that expanding the project could mean a shortage of money.

    “They expanded the scope of the job, and generally when you do that, you always need more money,” Donnenfeld said, adding, “You put paint on the wall, and if you’re going to paint a bigger wall, you need more paint.”

    The Fulton St. reconstruction project grew out of Mayor Bloomberg’s 2002 vision to revive Lower Manhattan.

    © 2006 Community Media, LLC

  2. #17

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    130 Fulton after its rape is complete




  3. #18
    The Dude Abides
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    I walked through that area a few weeks ago, and was amazed at how it is still so filthy. I can't wait to see the results of some of the street improvements. That being said, it had an electric vibrancy to it, and I felt that I liked this gritty aspect that still exists on many streets downtown.

  4. #19
    Disgruntled Optimist lofter1's Avatar
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    This must be the POS responsible for that horror show at 130 Fulton (per DOB Applications):

    Architect: ELLIOT VILKAS ARCH

  5. #20
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    Is this the building with the urban outfitters at the bottom, or am i confusing this with another atrocity of an addition?

  6. #21

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    If the folks at Zoning talked to the folks at Landmarks, they'd come up jointly with a formula for square-foot bonuses if the building's original treatment were replicated or sympathetically (and expensively) varied.

    You could leave it up to the folks at Landmrks to decide when the addition's design hit the target --but not until you'd replaced the present Commission, every man-jack of them.

  7. #22

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    There are plenty of landmarked buildings in the Financial district, but except for pockets like Stone St and South St Seaport, the entire district is not landmarked.

    130 Fulton is not a landmarked building, or this travesty would never have occurred. The fault is with the City Planning Commission.

  8. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    130 Fulton is not a landmarked building, or this travesty would never have occurred.
    Not surprisingly, since the city's full of comparably ornate buildings. This isn't a landmark in the sense that Flatiron is a landmark.

    In Britain they rate their landmarks into Category A, Category B, Category C, etc. There are different degrees of landmarkhood, and we could have different rules apply to each.

  9. #24

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    The problem with landmarking "secondary buildings" is that it is more time consuming to build a case for landmarking than the more obvious Flatiron.

    City Planning has no appreciation for aesthetics. They are only concerned with cubes.

    I'm sure this was discussed elsewhere; there is no city agency that is responsible for architectural standards. The City Arts Commission only has juristiction over city owned property.

    So it's either landmarked or not, and Giuliani and Bloomberg have effectively silenced the LPC. Sometimes, complaints from groups such as the Municipal Arts Society prods City Planning to act, but it is the exception.

  10. #25

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    ^ You're describing the real world as it is; I'm talking about improving it.

  11. #26

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    ^
    Maybe it was a bit hidden, but I was talking about improving it.

    there is no city agency that is responsible for architectural standards.

  12. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    ^
    Maybe it was a bit hidden, but I was talking about improving it.

    there is no city agency that is responsible for architectural standards.
    OK, right, it was there, but it slinked right by me disguised as a naysay...

    Rather than start yet another agency and add yet another time-consuming step to the permitting process, how about getting Landmarks to do it? Czsz had a good idea: declare all of Manhattan a historic district, then they'd have to consider each proposed project.

    But replace those rascals first with dedicated architecture buffs.

  13. #28

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    ^
    LPC is bad enough as it is, but making it responsible for every building in the city would create a huge agency and dilute its main objective further.

    Landmarking the entire island would be a good idea, but that would involve the same intensive research as is done on specific neighborhoods on a much larger scale. I doubt it would survive a court challenge by private property owners.

    I think the only logical place for it is within the Dept of Buildings, who already have jurisdiction over all building work.

  14. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZippyTheChimp View Post
    I think the only logical place for it is within the Dept of Buildings, who already have jurisdiction over all building work.
    Probably better than nothing, but I do suspect New York's building department is no more aesthetically enlightened than the ones I deal with daily.

    They would have to set up a separate department and segregate it from contact with the safety and wheelchair folk --preferably in a separate building.

    Then require at least a master's degree in Architecture, History of Art, or Fine Arts. Archaeology might also qualify.

  15. #30

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    As unbelievably atrocious/fugly as the addition is, I'm glad they saved the old facade, at least.

    I walked down Fulton and some of its parallel streets on the way to the seaport, etc. It's gritty allright, but not depressing or anything. Nice to see they're adding a playground, in case I take the kiddies next time I'm in NYC.

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