YOUR WEEKLY COMMUNITY NEWSPAPER SERVING CHELSEA, HUDSON YARDS & HELL’S KITCHEN
CB4 Holds Key to Flea’s Plea BY SEAN EGAN It was a tale of two sides, told twice — as separate gatherings of Community Board 4 (CB4) heard testimonial from vendors and ownership associated with the permit-seeking Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market (HKFM). The open-air event, held weekends at W. 39th St. and Ninth Ave., has been the subject of controversy recently. At Dec. 7’s CB4 Quality of Life (QOL) subcommittee, the Market’s 2016 Street Activity Permit Office (SAPO) Continued on page 4
Shedding Light on NYCHA’s Future BY YANNIC RACK To save and preserve the city’s affordable housing for future generations, the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) needs to reinvent itself on many levels, according to Shola Olatoye, the authority’s chair and CEO. “Our salvation is in the light,” Olatoye said during a recent interview, referring to NYCHA’s need for more transparency — Continued on page 7
Concerned about getting the gamer on your list the right holiday gift? Our empowering guide, for fans and the uninformed alike, begins on page 19.
Photo by Yannic Rack
A stableman leads a horse outside Chateau Stables in Hell’s Kitchen, one of only four traditional carriage stables left in New York City.
West Side Stables are Holdouts of Old New York BY YANNIC RACK On Midtown’s bustling West Side, a lot of things are changing. Longtime residents routinely rattle off familiar complaints about rising rents and overzealous development in neighborhoods once characterized by seedy tenement buildings and an industrial waterfront. But in Hell’s Kitchen, one traditional piece of the neighborhood’s fabric is holding on stubbornly: the carriage stables that have called the area home for generations and still delight tourists and New Yorkers alike with rides through Central Park. Today, there are only four carriage stables left in the city, all privately owned and located within a 15-block stretch of the same neighborhood, between W. 37th and W. 52nd Sts., off of 11th Ave. “It’s very much a Hell’s Kitchen business,” said Conor McHugh, a carriage driver and the stable manager at
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Clinton Park Stables, which occupies a three-story gray brick building across from DeWitt Clinton Park on W. 52nd St. “A lot of carriage drivers used to live in the neighborhood back when I started,” he recalled. “This business, probably because it’s been around for 150 years, is part of the soul of New York.” The largest of the four stables, Clinton Park is home to 78 horses that pull 39 carriages, out of only 68 that are licensed to operate in the city. Like many of the men and women still working in the carriage industry, McHugh, an immigrant from Ireland and a 29-year veteran of the trade, reflects the history of the area as an ethnically diverse, working-class neighborhood. A relative newcomer in contrast, Christina Hansen
Continued on page 12 VOLUME VOLUME 07, ISSUE 07, ISSUE 41 | 22 DECEMBER | JULY 10 16 - 16, 22, 2015