January 26th - February 1st, 2013
Lower Manhattan Businesses Turn to Crowd Funding to Recover from Sandy Losses
January 27 - Three months after Hurricane Sandy, it is still eerily deserted at the South Street Seaport in Lower Manhattan. A security guard patrols empty blocks that would otherwise be bustling, looking into windows of businesses that are still closed, reported NY1. Getting back to business is likely to take three to four more months for some businesses. That was too long a wait for Amanda Byron Zink, who owns the Salty Paw Pet Grooming Spa. Soon after, she started temporarily operating out of the Seaport Animal Hospital and came across a flyer for the crowd funding website Lucky Ant. "I called them up and at that point I was just so destitute. With no insurance money, with nothing left in my store and they said 'I want to help you. I want to help raise funds,'" Zink said. So far, Zink has raised about $9,000 for her business through the site. She suggested it to a group of her fellow business owners who had formed a group called United Front On Historic Front Street. Members said they like that Lucky Ant does not simply solicit donations. United Frontbis hoping loyal customers, and maybe a couple of new ones, will lend a hand in restoring the neighborhood even better than it was before. For more information, visit luckyant.com.
Kelly: NYPD Will Have Security Presence At WTC Site
January 28 - Police Commissioner Ray Kelly is denying reports the New York City Police Department will not have a role securing the World Trade Center site, reported NY1. There is at least one article claiming New Jersey Governor Christ Christie wants the Port Authority to be in charge. Kelly said while he has a strong relationship with the agency, the city does not plan on excluding the nations largest police force from the 16-acre complex. He said there was an agreement between Governors Andrew Cuomo and Chris Christie for joint patrolling and enforcement at the site. Cuomo has not yet commented.
Rescue Plan Is Emerging for Hospital in Lower Manhattan
January 28 - NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital is bailing out the financially stricken New York Downtown Hospital, the last remaining hospital in Lower Manhattan, reported Crain's New York and other sources. NewYork-Presbyterian has asked state officials for permission to acquire the hospital, which struggled for years with persistent operating losses. Downtowns losses, NewYork-Presbyterian officials wrote in December to the state health department, would continue in 2013 unless the current situation is changed. The only institution below 14th Street since St. Vincents Hospital was shuttered in 2010, Downtown will become NewYork-Presbyterian's sixth campus. A likely transformation is in the cards for the 180-bed community hospital, which according to a NewYork-Presbyterian letter, would transform the hospital into a sustainable and financially feasible model of care. A spokeswoman for NewYork-Presbyterian told Crain's that Downtown would remain a community hospital but declined to further elaborate
Overnight PATH Service Resumes Between Newark, Hoboken and WTC
January 28 - For the first time since the hurricane, PATH trains are once again running overnight between Newark and the World Trade Center, reported NY1 and other sources. The service restoration impacts weekday service between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. In addition, full weekday PATH service between Hoboken and the World Trade Center is back for the first time since Hurricane Sandy hit. Service between the two stops resumed Jan. 30 at 6 a.m. It was suspended after flooding devastated the Hoboken terminal, putting the tracks under eight feet of water. The Exchange Place and World Trade Center stations will stay closed over the weekends throughout February for further repairs.
HarperCollins Leases 4.5 Floors in 195 Broadway
January 30 - Nearly 200 years after first opening for business in Lower Manhattan, HarperCollins Publishing Inc. is returning to its downtown roots, reported Real Estate Weekly. The publishing giant has just signed a long-term lease for over 180,000 square feet of office space comprising 4.5 floors at 195 Broadway for its new headquarters. It expects to begin relocating from its current midtown offices in spring 2014. The million-square-foot building at 195 Broadway, which once served as the New York headquarters of AT&T, is owned by L&L Holding Company, in partnership with Beacon Capital Partners. Soon to begin its third century of publishing, HarperCollins was founded in 1817 when James and John Harper opened the doors of their printing firm, J&J Harper, at the corner of Frontand Dover Streets in Lower Manhattan. The firm went on to occupy several different downtown buildings until moving uptown in the 1920s.
CB1 Reviews Response to Sandy and Recommends Enhanced Preparedness
January 31 - Community Board 1 has prepared a report, Emergency Preparedness: Lessons Learned From Superstorm Sandy, which both looks back at local response to the storm, and looks forward to how Lower Manhattan can be better prepared for similar calamities in the future, according to The Broadsheet. The report recommends more than 60 measures across 11 categories, ranging from Communications, Evacuation, and Emergency Shelters to Housing Safety to City Government. The report advises the city government to create an updated evacuation map that reflects both anticipated storm surges associated with hurricanes and predicted flooding from once in 100 year flood and once in 500 year flood zones. Among other proposals, CB1 also calls upon the city to create more emergency shelters downtown, equip them with back-up power capacity, and conduct an annual discussion about emergency shelter locations for Lower Manhattan residents. The report also proposes flood protection and back-up generators for hospitals, as well as back-up power for street lights and traffic signals. In another health-related measure, CB1 wants the city to develop a contingency plan to expedite pharmacy openings and distribute medications to those unable to get them. CB1 chair Catherine McVay Hughes notes that the report is not the end of CB1 involvement of the process of revising policy and rebuilding infrastructure in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, but rather, a beginning. She invites any interested member of the public to join the conversation on Thursday, February 7, when the CB1 Planning Committee will meet, starting at 6:00 pm, at 49-51 Chambers Street, room 709.
Arts Center at WTC Gets $1 Million in Seed Money
January 31 - The organization overseeing the redevelopment of Lower Manhattan on Thursday authorized $1 million for the Performing Arts Center that is planned for the World Trade Center site. The vote by the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation, which was reported in The Wall Street Journal, will enable the Performing Arts Center to hire staff members and begin construction by 2017. The allocation had been held up by LMDC concerns about project cost and about how to raise the money for it. The center, designed by Frank Gehry, is expected to have the Joyce Theater, which presents dance, as its anchor tenant. Center officials declined to estimate the project cost, but earlier estimates had said it was likely to cost about $300 million, with $100 million of that already committed by the development corporation. In addition, the center has raised $25 million privately.