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V i s i t u s o n l i n e a t w w w .T h e V i l l a g e r. c o m

THE May 9, 2019 Volume 89 • Number 19

Greenwich Village, East Village, Lower East Side, Soho, Union Square, Chinatown and Noho, Since 1933 •

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BUS RUMBLE! 14th St., S.B.S. plans spark protest, outrage Page 6

A novel pilot program for 14th St. would see it turned into “Transit/ Trucks Priorit y” lanes. (Photo by Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech)

GREEN FACE-OFF Final public hearing on Elizabeth St. Garden Page 8

Elizabeth St. Garden suppor ters rallied before a Cit y Council hearing on a housing project slated for the site. (Photo by Sarah Ferguson)


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Chelsea Dems fete Trump foe Nadler is “when you have a president that is trying to become a monarch.” “It’s not as if he’s been plotting,” he added of Trump. “He’s just doing, without thought. I don’t know if that’s better or worse.” He accused Trump of trying to take control of funding appropriations, which he said is Congress’s role, and over all of posing a “challenge to the right of Congress to have a role in what’s going on.” On that latter note, he was referring to his committee’s inability to obtain the unredacted Mueller Report and supporting information. On collusion with the Russians, Nadler said, “There was… . “We have a president whose campaign clearly knew about it and encouraged it, but according to the Mueller Report, it didn’t reach the standard of criminal conspiracy.” The veteran representative noted he had sent a letter the day before to U.S. Attorney General William Barr demanding he comply with a subpoena and turn over the unredacted report, setting a deadline of Monday. “We’re going to have a confrontation this week,” Nadler declared. “On Monday we’ll go to contempt citation against the attorney general — and there will be a struggle. “It may take a year to enforce subpoenas,” he conceded. “It doesn’t happen fast. He may succeed on running out the clock on a lot of this.” Nevertheless, it’s important to “vindicate congressional power” versus an overly aggressive executive branch, Nadler added. “We’re engaged in a struggle,” he

BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

T

aking a brief break from the Washington political pressure cooker and the Mueller Report drama, Jerrold Nadler was in Chelsea Saturday to receive an honor — and some rousing encouragement — from the Chelsea Reform Democratic Club. Since January, the 14term West Side congressmember has chaired the House Judiciary Committee, which is leading its own probe into whether Donald Trump’s campaign colluded with Russia and whether Trump committed obstruction. As such, Nadler is the man of the hour, at the center of the action, and his fellow politicos said that’s right where he should be. And it’s where Nadler said he wants to be, too. C.R.D.C., at its Annual Brunch, at Zia Maria restaurant, at 318 W. 23rd St., presented Nadler with an award of special recognition for Outstanding Service and Leadership to the Preservation of Democracy. Assemblymember Richard Gottfried has known Nadler since their days at the elite Stuyvesant High School. They were part of a group of ambitious young Democrats dubbed the West Side Kids, who strove to win election to political office and have an impact. In introducing Nadler to the Chelsea club, Gottfried said of his longtime ally, “He’s one of the smartest people I ever met, and one of the smartest people in government today, and one of the most progressive. “He is profoundly and fiercely devoted to the Constitution of the United States, democracy and due process.

PHOTO BY TEQUILA MINSKY

Congressmember Jerrold Nadler speaking at C.R.D.C.’s Annual Brunch.

“How many of us get to be at the center of the struggle to preserve our country and our democracy?” Gottfried asked. “There is nobody who should be in that role more.” As Nadler took the podium, the crowd chanted as if he were a prizefighter entering the ring, “Jeh-ree! Jehree! Jeh-ree!” In his remarks, Nadler noted he was drawn to politics early on, around age 12 or 13, out of interest in civil liberties and concern over “forced confessions.” “Our country is threatened now,” he said. “It has been once before, but then we had a civil war.” Nadler said the worst situation of all

continued. “I don’t know what form this will take — whether we’ll impeach him or not. I don’t know if it makes sense since the Senate won’t impeach.” As for his current role in the spotlight, Nadler, who lives on the Upper West Side, said, “It’s fair to say I always wanted to live in exciting times. I never anticipated this.” Ultimately, he said, the goal is to preserve the sanctity of American democracy. “We have to hand off this government in at least as good a form as we got it,” he stressed. Earlier at the brunch, state Senator Brad Hoylman had announced that the Senate this week would pass legislation to allow the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance to provide Trump’s tax returns to the House Ways and Means Committee. “How important it was to get a Democratic state Senate,” Nadler said, “and also important to have a Democratic House rather than a bunch of sycophants.” As Nadler wrapped up, a male club member exhorted, “Go get ’em, Jerry!” Asked by this paper, before his speech, about last Saturday morning’s news — that the latest economic statistics show U.S. unemployment at a 50-year l0w — Nadler said it really has been going on for 10 years. “The economy — because of what the Obama administration did at the beginning of the recession in 2009, the stimulus bill, we saved the auto industry — since then, we’ve been on steady economic growth,” he said. “And, in fact, the overall growth rate in the Obama years was better than the overall growth rate in the Trump years.” On May 19, the Village Independent Democrats and Downtown Independent Democrats will co-host a moderated discussion with Nadler.

Johnson hints L.G.B.T. landmarks to come BY ALEJANDR A O’CONNELLDOMENECH

C

ity Council Speaker Corey Johnson was honored at this year’s Historic Districts Council Grassroots Preservation Awards on April 30. Appropriately, the ceremony was held at New York City’s oldest chapel, St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery, in the East Village. In his acceptance speech, the longtime preservation advocate hinted at some big landmarkings to come. “I am pretty hopeful that with Tin Pan Alley being heard today, I think we are going to have some exciting announcements in the next six weeks on L.G.B.T. historic sites for the 50th anniversary of Stonewall,” he said.

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According to Andrew Berman, the executive director of Village Preservation (formerly Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation), Johnson has spoken with the nonprofit about their years-long campaign to have Julius’ bar, the L.G.B.T. Community Center and the former Gay Activists Alliance firehouse landmarked. The speaker supports the landmarking of all three sites, along with others outside of Village Preservation’s coverage area, according to Berman. Johnson’s office could not provide any information on which of the city’s dozens of L.G.B.T. historic properties would be landmarked by mid-June. When he was a member of Community Board 4, Johnson helped initiate surveys of the district’s unprotected

historic buildings. Those efforts are now serving as the basis for requests for evaluating Hell’s Kitchen’s first historic districts, according to Simeon Bankoff, executive director of the Historic Districts Council. During his tenure on the City Council, Johnson advocated for the designation of the South Village SullivanThompson Historic District, which was finally landmarked in 2017, and for increased landmark protections in Greenwich Village. Johnson, who referred to himself as a preservationist during his speech, also advocated for landmarking the Stonewall Inn, designated in 2015, and strongly opposed an addition to the landmarked Hopper Gibbons House. Most recently, Johnson is helping lead TVG

the charge to designate Tin Pan Alley — the stretch of 28th St. between Fifth and Sixth Aves. where composers, lyricists and sheet music publishers created many of the songs in the Great American Songbook. In its annual awards, H.D.C. recognizes advocates for outstanding work in preserving historically important buildings and spaces. This year, in addition to Johnson, also receiving awards were the Coalition to Save the Former Hans S. Christian Memorial Kindergarten, the Elmhurst History and Cemeteries Preservation Society, the Sunset Park Landmarks Committee and the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. May 9, 2019

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Police Blotter credit cards totaling around $6,640 in value.

First Precinct Tube toucher Police are searching for a man alleged to have masturbated in the Fulton St. subway station on Sun., April 28, around 8:30 p.m. The purported perv was touching himself on a stairwell landing near the 4/5 platform when a 19-year-old woman walked past him, she told police. He fled in an unknown direction soon after. The suspect is described as being a black man in his 20s wearing a darkcolored baseball cap and dark-colored hoodie. Anyone with information is asked to call the Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). Tips can also be submitted on the CrimeStoppers Web site at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM, on Twitter @NYPDTips or by texting to 274637 (CRIMES) and then entering TIP577.

10th Precinct ‘Con Ed’ con An elderly man living on W. 24th St. between Ninth and Tenth Aves. was swindled of cash by someone pretending to be a Con Edison worker, according to a police report. On Fri., May 3, at 1:15 p.m., the 79-year-old victim received a call from a person who was impersonating a Con Ed worker. The caller persuaded the victim to purchase a MoneyPak prepaid card with a balance of $395. The senior then gave the card’s number to the thief, who made purchases using the number. There was no description available of the fraudulent utility worker. COURTESY N.Y.P.D.

This Mohawked man repor tedly bashed another guy on the head with a glass at Gym Spor tsbar in Chelsea.

identity was stolen.

Once inside, he swiped a laptop, laptop bag, checkbooks and three credit cards, with a combined estimated value of $440. Next, on Fri., Nov. 16, around 3:40 p.m., the same guy allegedly entered a restaurant at 245 E. 44th St. and took a computer tablet worth roughly $500 from the reception counter. In a third incident, on Fri., Dec. 7, at about 1:10 p.m., the busy burglar entered the Due West gastropub, at 189 W. 10th St., and stole a $2,500 laptop. On Dec. 29, shortly after 3 p.m., police say, the burglar entered Harwood on Hudson restaurant, at 430 Hudson St., snatching a tablet valued at $800 from the hostess desk before fleeing. Finally, on Sat., April 13, he reportedly got into an apartment in a residential building around 3:20 p.m., near W. Third St. and Sixth Ave. According to police, surveillance footage showed him taking one coat and a set of keys. The suspect is described as black, around age 50 to 60, with black hair, and has been observed wearing sunglasses over his forehead.

Sixth Precinct Inside job Crowbar attack A 32-year-old man reported being struck with a crowbar at the southeast corner of E. 14th St. and University Place on Tues., April 30, around midnight, police said. The victim suffered physical injury from the incident. Gerson Vargas, 20, was arrested on assault charges at the scene. It was not immediately clear what motivated the attack.

Murderous past Police have arrested a man previously convicted on a second-degree murder charge for trying to cash a fraudulent check at the TD Bank at 122 Greenwich Ave., at Eighth Ave., on Wed., May 1, around 2:30 p.m. Harold Verley, 57, who was paroled in November 2017 after serving time for murdering a man in Central Park in 1979, is accused of trying to cash a $2,200 check at the bank using a forged New York State ID containing the name and other stolen information of a 66-year-old man. Police said Verley also was in possession of that man’s credit card and Social Security and bank account numbers. The suspect was arrested at the scene. The victim was home at the time of the incident and is unsure when his

A 30-year-old resident at 236 W. 10th St. in the Village reported that nearly $30,000 worth of jewelry was stolen from her apartment sometime between 2:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. on Thurs., March 31. The victim said her jewelry was inside boxes in her bedroom in the morning, but when she came home that afternoon, she found the valuables missing and that the boxes had been moved. Police found no sign of forced entry when they investigated that night. Work was reportedly being done on the apartment building at the time, and the victim told police that management had spare keys to the apartment. Cops arrested Kenneth Dellaquila, 60, on Wed., May 1, for stealing the five gold necklaces, four diamond earrings, two diamond bracelets, a diamond ring and a watch that were stolen from the apartment a month earlier.

Ninth Precinct

Busy burglar Police say a burglar has been targeting restaurants in the Village’s Sixth Precinct and elsewhere since September. According to police, on Mon., Sept. 17, around 2:44 p.m., the suspect entered a fast-food restaurant at 301 Sixth Ave., near Carmine St., by gaining entry through an unlocked service entrance.

Laptops and bling Police said that on Sat., April 6, around 3:45 p.m., a man unlawfully entered a residential building around E. Seventh St. and Avenue A. He then entered an apartment and removed laptop computers, jewelry, clothing and

Scooter DWI A woman was arrested Fri., May 3, for operating a scooter in Chelsea while intoxicated, police said. Around 1 a.m., a woman was riding an unregistered and uninsured scooter, with another passenger onboard, as well. The woman lost control of the scooter and crashed in the middle of W. 20th St. between Seventh and Eighth Aves. She was taken in by police under suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. When tested, she had a 0.175 blood-alcohol content — 0.08 or higher is considered legally impaired. Indigo Ford, 26, was arrested for DWI, a misdemeanor.

‘Mohawk’ attack Police are looking for a man in connection with an assault last week at the Gym Sportsbar, at 167 Eighth Ave., between W. 18th and 19th Sts. On Fri., May 3, around 7 p.m., according to cops, the suspect reportedly hit a 56-year-old man on the head with a drinking glass after an argument. The victim suffered a cut to the side of his head and was taken to Lenox Health Greenwich Village in stable condition. The suspect is described as Hispanic, age 25 to 30, 5 feet 8 inches tall and sporting a Mohawk.

Rico Burney, Gabe Herman and Lincoln Anderson

The Villager (USPS 578930) ISSN 0042-6202 Copyright © 2019 by Schneps Media is published weekly by Schneps Media, One Metrotech North, 10th floor Brooklyn, NY 11201. 52 times a year. Business and Editorial Offices: One Metrotech North, 10th floor Brooklyn, NY 11201. Accounting and Circulation Offices: Schneps Media, One Metrotech North, 10th floor Brooklyn, NY 11201. Call 718-260-2500 to subscribe. Periodicals postage prices is paid at New York, N.Y. Postmaster: Send address changes to The Villager, One Metrotech North, 10th floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201 Annual subscription by mail in Manhattan and Brooklyn $29 ($35 elsewhere). Single copy price at office and newsstands is $1. The entire contents of newspaper, including advertising, are copyrighted and no part may be reproduced without the express permission of the publisher - © 2019 Schneps Media.

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Sue threat vs. 14th St./S.B.S. plan only be allowed to travel one block along 14th St., before having to veer off at the first right turn. In his letter to Trottenberg and Byford, Schwartz noted that Community Board 3, in March, passed a resolution that “vigorously denounced” the S.B.S. plan. The attorney noted that C.B. 3 said cutting bus stops on the Lower East Side would cause “serious hardship” to local seniors who depend on it as their main east-west transit option, and also to connect them to neighborhoods to the north. In addition, Board 3 conducted a study finding that 15.6 percent of the population in its district is over age 65, and that 23 percent of those individuals have disabilities — “far greater than the average population of persons in the rest of New York City,” the attorney noted. “The plan, therefore, sharply impacts the elderly and persons with disabilities, who rely on bus transit on a route that is not served by a subway,” Schwartz wrote. “In the name of ‘speeding up buses,’ seniors and the disabled are being ignored. The same is true across 14th St., where for example, a [bus] stop in front of The Victoria, at 5 E. 14th St., has been eliminated despite the fact that building is a naturally occurring retirement community [NORC], with scores of seniors and others with limited mobility.” In addition, Schwartz pointed out, S.B.S. routes, “as originally envisioned, were designed to speed buses along

BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

H

ey! Hold that bus! Here we go again. … Village activist attorney Arthur Schwartz on Monday fired off a letter to the heads of the Department of Transportation and the New York City Transit Authority, putting them on notice that they cannot roll out their changes for the M14 bus — and the reconfiguring of 14th St. — without first doing a formal environmental impact study. Polly Trottenberg, the D.O.T. commissioner, and Andy Byford, the Transit Authority president, hope to launch Select Bus Service on the M14A/D routes soon, plus transform 14th St. by June into a so-called Transit/Trucks Priority lanes pilot project. Lower East Side seniors are up in arms that the S.B.S. scheme would eliminate 15, or one-third, of the current M14 stops in their community. Meanwhile, over on the other side of town, seniors living in Westbeth Artists Housing are furious that the plan would cut the Abingdon Square loop at the western end of the M14A route. Representing Village and Chelsea block associations and co-op and condo boards — in an ad hoc group called the 14th St. Coalition — plus disability-rights activists, Schwartz sued the two agencies and others last year over their since-scrapped “busway” plan for 14th St., as well as the new bike lanes on 12th and 13th Sts., plus the lack of

PHOTO BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

An M14A bus laying over on Hudson St. at Abingdon Square — outside the aptly named Bus Stop Cafe.

handicap-accessible elevators at L-train stops. This Monday, Schwartz warned the two agency honchos that if they don’t now sit down with him and resolve this latest situation by June, his clients want him back in court fighting the city’s plans. Mayor Bill de Blasio, 10 days ago, announced a TTP pilot for 14th St. The plan — the first of its kind ever proposed in the city — would prioritize buses and trucks, while cars would

long routes in commercial corridors. The M14A and D serve residential communities.” Furthermore, Schwartz stated in his letter, when a no-cars “busway” was originally slated for 14th St. as part of the L-train full shutdown mitigation plan, “it was pitched and defended as a ‘temporary’ means to deal with 84,000 daily L-train riders who were going to be flooding the 14th St. buses and sidewalks. But that problem no longer needs to be addressed… . “This [current] plan, including the bike lanes, institutes permanent infrastructure changes,” he stressed. “As such, it is…clearly subject to the State Environmental Quality Review Act. Such a project requires either a Negative Declaration (which would be absurd) or an Environmental Impact Statement (E.I.S.).” The attorney warned the agency leaders that closing 14th St. to car traffic would “cause horrific traffic jams on 12th, 13th, 15th, 16th, 17th and even 18th St.,” plus all the north-south avenues from Eighth Ave. to Third Ave. He added, “The bike lanes, which are sparsely used (and have become truck and for-hire vehicle parking zones) will only exacerbate the problem.” In conclusion, Schwartz wrote the D.O.T. and Transit top brass, “This is a plan being foisted on communities wholly united in opposition. In the absence of the problems which may have been created by the L-train shutdown, this radical restructuring of the Greenwich Village and Chelsea communities must be withdrawn.” Spokespersons for the M.T.A. and D.O.T. did not respond to requests for comment by press time.

Loony to cut Abingdon loop, seniors cry BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

A

t a Community Board 2 committee meeting last Thursday night, city representatives lauded how a new Transit/Truck Priority lanes pilot plan would increase bus speed and reliability along 14th St. But elderly residents from Westbeth, the affordable artists’ housing complex, and the far West Village, in general, angrily protested that part of the scheme — to drop the Abingdon Square loop at the M14A bus route’s western end — failed to consider their transit needs. The meeting was held by the C.B. 2 Traffic and Transportation Committee. Representatives from the New York City Transit Authority and the Department of Transportation outlined the pilot plan, which would start in June and last 18 months. The pilot would

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turn 14th St. from Third to Ninth Aves. into a through route for buses, trucks and emergency vehicles. Cars and cabs could go on the street for just one block — for drop-offs or pickups — but would then have to take the next right turn. This would be the city’s first Transit/Truck Priority street. The program would be seven days a week, though its hours of operation are not set yet. Bus speeds would reportedly increase by 30 percent because there would be less traffic on the street and also because, with the M14A and M14D becoming exclusively Select Bus Service, the boarding process would be faster, too. S.B.S. — with double-length buses that are “articulated,” meaning they can flex in the middle — is used on other major crosstown streets, such as 23rd, 34th, 79th and 86th Sts. A presenter stressed S.B.S. for 14th St. is not a pilot program, but permanent. The M14 is

currently the city’s second-slowest bus, often moving as sluggishly as 4 miles per hour, the presenters said. In addition, the plan would keep trucks from going on nearby side streets, keeping them on 14th St. One of the agency reps noted that the M14 “has been hemorrhaging ridership” the past 10 years because of “slowness and unreliability.” When the intention to drop the Abingdon Square loop from the M14A route was noted, the outbursts started. “We’re gonna sue you!” a woman cried. “ ‘Pain and suffering.’ You’ll pay!” An agency rep tried to mollify the outraged seniors by saying Abingdon Square would continue to be served by the M11, M12 and M20. The seniors objected those buses arrive even less frequently than the M14A. Ruby Ludwig, an ethnomusicologist TVG

from Westbeth, said if she took the M20 to 14th St. and then transferred to the M14, when she arrived at Union Square she would have to pay another fare for the subway. “You have to get real,” she chided. “People use walkers and have asthma.” The Transit Authority presenter countered, “It has been increasingly difficult to operate buses in Abingdon Square because of the tight turns.” He added there have been complaints about the spot’s use as a bus-layover area. Shirley Secunda, the committee chairperson, noted she had received 168 letters from people protesting the plan to lop off the Abingdon leg. “Mostly seniors, a lot of disabled, physically challenged people — this is the bus they use to get crosstown,” she said, holding the stack of letters. “Most are saying, ‘We can’t walk eight blocks to get the bus.’” Schneps Media


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7


War of words at Eliz. Garden hearing BY SAR AH FERGUSON

T

he de Blasio administration is plowing ahead with its plan to raze the iconic Elizabeth St. Garden for low-income senior housing, despite vociferous opposition from Little Italy residents and Community Board 2, whose members have repeatedly urged the city to shift the project to a vacant lot half a mile away. Last week, fans and foes of the hotly disputed Haven Green development faced off at City Hall with back-to-back rallies and heated testimony before members of the Council’s Land Use Committee. This hearing was the last opportunity for the public to weigh in on the 123-unit, mixed-use housing and retail development before it goes for a full vote by the City Council at the end of the month. Councilmember Margaret Chin, who pushed to have the garden site designated for housing back in 2013 (without the knowledge of C.B. 2), outmaneuvered garden supporters by obtaining a permit for the Haven Green rally first. That enabled the pro-housing crowd to pack the hearing room seats early, relegating most of the garden fans to the balcony upstairs. Not that the councilmembers seemed all that interested in hearing from the garden supporters anyway. Aside from Adrienne Adams, the subcommittee chairperson, most of the other committee members were absent for most of the hearing (a stance in keeping with the Council’s tradition of rubberstamping projects sponsored by fellow members — in this case Chin.) During their rally, Chin and various heads of affordable housing groups sought to cast the Elizabeth St. Garden as a luxury in the face of the city’s dire housing crisis. Standing before a group of AsianAmerican seniors, Chin spoke of the fears of many about being priced out of her district. “They want to know when it will be built,” she said. “Telling them that now is not the time and that this city-owned lot in not the place is unacceptable,”

PHOTO BY SARAH FERGUSON

Scott Shor t, the C.E.O. of RiseBoro Communit y Par tnership, left, called the Little Italy area where the garden is located, “one of the wealthiest and most privileged communities in the city.”

she said, defending her choice to site the project on what is now a heavily used and much-loved sculpture park. “Fair and equitable housing calls for all neighborhoods in our city to participate in alleviating this crisis,” she added. A similar line was voiced by Scott Short, the C.E.O. of RiseBoro Community Partnership, one of the developers. “It is rare that you get the opportunity to approve a single project that so clearly advances the principles of equity and fairness,” Short said. “To be able to build housing for some of our poorest, oldest, most vulnerable citizens in one of the wealthiest and most privileged communities in the entire city, while offering publicly accessible open space back to that community…is a chance that doesn’t come around very often,” he said. Karen Haycox, C.E.O. of Habitat for Humanity, which will be getting 11,000 square feet of below-market office space out of the project, was even more emphatic. “Haven Green will be built in one of the wealthiest, whitest neighborhoods in the city — a neighborhood that

rarely — if ever — sees new affordable housing created.” She said building “deeply affordable” L.B.G.T.Q.-friendly housing on this particular site was “a matter of social, economic and racial justice.” But garden defenders pushed back against the shame campaign. “This is not an elitist space. It is a delight for all,” said Michelle Campo, of the Bowery Alliance of Neighbors a.k.a. BAN. “If this city was truly interested in affordable housing, they would take Hudson Yards and make that affordable housing,” charged Aziz Dehkan, director of the NYC Coalition of Community Gardens, which represents gardens across the city. Assembly member Deborah Glick took the city to task for pursuing an unnecessarily divisive project when there is another alternative site at 388 Hudson St. where even more housing might be built. “The proposed destruction of the Elizabeth St. Garden is emblematic of the constant, pernicious way in which the city pits open space and housing against each other,” Glick charged. Noting that C.B. 2 has one of the low-

est ratios of open space in the city, she said the garden “has all the characteristics of a park and is used as a park.” Similarly, Assemblymember YuhLine Niou also called the fight a “false choice” and called on the city to preserve the Elizabeth St. Garden as a public park. But although Glick and Niou have both signed on to the community lawsuits seeking to save the garden, neither of them has a vote on this matter. In a sign of how well the city has lobbied, the head of New Yorkers for Parks also testified on behalf of Haven Green. “We did not come to this decision lightly,” said the group’s director Lynn Kelly, who cited the area’s “limited opportunities for deeply affordable housing” as the reason for her support. Thus far, only Brooklyn Councilmember Rafael Espinal has been willing to denounce the city’s campaign against the Elizabeth St. Garden. Espinal has proposed a moratorium on the development of green spaces. Whether Espinal or Carlina Rivera, whose East Village district includes more than 50 gardens, will speak out on the Elizabeth St. Garden when the project comes up for a full vote will be interesting to watch. Civil-rights attorney Norman Siegel, who is representing the nonprofit currently running the garden, challenged the Council to do its due diligence. “Only one of the five committee members are here,” he observed. “Is this democracy? You’ve got to go to the garden before you vote! If you go, the choice before you becomes no longer abstract.” C.B. 2 member David Gruber wondered why the city would want to destroy a place that brings wonder to ordinary New Yorkers. “It’s always voted as one of New York’s 10 most beautiful and unique places,” he noted. “I don’t want to compare this to the old Penn Station, but there will be buyer’s regret if this park is destroyed. It’s not a NIMBY issue.”

Stringer: L.E.S. playgrounds need repairs BY ALEJANDR A O’CONNELLDOMENECH

T

he East Village and Lower East Side are filled with hazardous playgrounds, according to a newly released study by Comptroller Scott Stringer. The report, “State of Play: A New Model of NYC Playgrounds,” states that 13, or 25 percent, of the playgrounds in Community District 3 were found “un-

8

May 9, 2019

acceptable” by the Parks Department inspection program. A playground deemed unacceptable could have broken equipment, loose equipment or broken pavement. The ratings were “largely driven by issues of cleanliness,” though, according to a Stringer representative. In C.B. 3, the trees at Nathan Straus Playground, at Rivington and Clinton Sts., and the play equipment at Baruch Playground, near E. Houston St. and

the F.D.R. Drive, were deemed Priority 1 hazards. The report also states that 23 playgrounds in the district were found to have an issue, such as graffiti, litter, fences, pavement or play equipment. The data used in Stringer’s report is from March through October of last year. According to a Parks Department representative, all of the cited hazardous conditions in the Lower East Side playgrounds have since been fi xed. TVG

District Leader Daisy Paez said playgrounds are needed more than ever since the city’s coastal-resiliency plans for East River Park call for burying it under a layer of new soil and then rebuilding the park on top. With nine children, her parents did not have the means to take vacations, she said. Instead, they turned to public spaces — like East River Park, along the F.D.R. Drive — to relax. “F.D.R. Park was my Disney World,” she said. Schneps Media


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Eats

Lupe’s in Soho: Fun, affordable Mexican BY GABE HERMAN

L

upe’s East L.A. Kitchen has been a Soho staple for Mexican food for more than 20 years, and offers a great alternative to fast-food places in the area like Chipotle and Dos Toros Taqueria. At the corner of Sixth Ave. and Watts St., Lupe’s is small but has a festive and casual atmosphere that makes it feel more like a diner than a restaurant, and it also offers outdoor seating. The menu is comprehensive and affordable, with dishes ranging from around $10 to $15 and a full range of vegetarian, meat and seafood options. Among the most popular dishes are the chicken burrito, which comes with chili sauce, rice and salad; pollo norteno, with marinated chicken breast pieces grilled with onions, tomatoes and green chilis; a super vegetarian burrito, and a super quesadilla. And there’s chiles relleno, a vegetarian dish featuring fresh poblano chiles filled with a blend of cheeses, battered and fried. Portions are generous, including sides like chips and salsa, which are just $2. Egg dishes are served all day, including huevos rancheros, a scrambled egg burrito, and many types of omelets. And there are breakfast and lunch specials, along with a brunch menu on weekends that includes banana pancakes and pancakes de maiz. A recent Yelp reviewer gave Lupe’s

PHOTO BY GABE HERMAN

With casual decor, Lupe’s almost has the feel of a diner.

five stars out of five, writing, “If you were to throw a dive bar and a Mexican restaurant into a blender and then pour it into a glass with a tequila floater you’d have Lupe’s. This was such a fun place to have dinner with a staff that was having as good of a time as the patrons.� Lupe’s is open daily, from 10:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday to Wednesday, and until midnight on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. More information, including a full menu, can be found at lupeskitchen.com.

    

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Back in 1911, the Tompkins Square Park playground had a boys’ side and a girls’ side. The Lower East Side playground was apparently very heavily used back then, even in the winter. It was an era before civilian use of radio. The advent of television and, later, computers and then smart phones were decades away. Families with young children sought healthy social and physical activity in the fresh air and an escape from crowded tenements. Back then, kids were the opposite of coach potatoes, as can be seen in a photo from a “field day” in 1912 of a potato race.

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VICTORIA SCHNEPS-YUNIS JOSHUA SCHNEPS LINCOLN ANDERSON GABE HERMAN MICHELE HERMAN BOB KRASNER TEQUILA MINSKY MARY REINHOLZ PAUL SCHINDLER JOHN NAPOLI MARCOS RAMOS CLIFFORD LUSTER (718) 260-2504 CLUSTER@CNGLOCAL.COM MARVIN ROCK GAYLE GREENBURG JIM STEELE JULIO TUMBACO ELIZABETH POLLY

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Op-Ed

Jaywalking ticket for doing my job BY CL AY TON PATTERSON

N

ew York City is about change. Our politicians changed the rules and my part of the Lower East Side went from a neighborhood to an entertainment zone. An entertainment zone opened up all kinds of loopholes, allowing bars and liquor licenses to force out most of the small independent businesses that feed and make up a community. The entertainment we got is a wild, out-of-control, spring break-type environment. Besides the destruction of a community, another downside is the kids passed out on the street, getting sick all over the place. The worst-case scenario is the wrong mixture of alcohol and drugs leading to death. It is our right to safeguard our community in the different ways we can. In America, we have the right to photograph the street. As an American interested in free speech, I work to hold my own line on free-speech rights. One recent, almost ludicrous — silly, for sure — violation of my free rights was by two cops who took exception to me photographing a person being put into an ambulance.

‘We have the right to photograph the street.’ One of them started out by giving me some abuse, like, “Have you never seen a drunk person before?” and “What are you doing? Trying to make some fame on social media?” Excuse me? I thought he was a cop and not a social critic. He has no idea who I am or what I am doing. After the patient was loaded into the ambulance, the cops were still a little wound up. I started to walk out of the street. The traffic had been blocked by the ambulance. One cop pulled my jacket. As we crossed the street, there was a cop on each side of me. One said, “I can give you a ticket for jaywalking.” I said, “Do whatever you think you should.” In other words, do not tell me my job and I will not tell you yours. Then I got a little show. A number of cop cars rolled up. The supervisor came and oversaw the ordeal. So the cop using his badge as a weapon punished me by giving me a go-tocourt ticket. Stupid? I think so. We have all witnessed people drunk and passed out. But I do not remember an incident where a licensed establishment served so much alcohol so quickly, that the person needed to be hospitalized. But there have been deaths caused by the mixture of drugs and alcohol. As a member of this community, I think I have a right to know if some licensed establishment is allowing kids to drink this way, or if drugs are being sold along with the booze. The cop said the patient was drunk. So why the ambulance? Why the paranoia? If they had said nothing, it would have been just another situation. Now it is an incident. The question is how to use this incident to teach the cops something about free speech and the fact we have the rights to document the street. We are not a fascist country and the cops are wrong to destroy my rights by using their badge as a weapon. Yes, I could jack them up; take the case to trial and/ or go to the Civilian Complaint Review Board and waste their time, like they are wasting mine. Yes, this is a silly fight. But it does reinforce my belief in the system and makes me appreciate that I have — as an immigrant, as an artist, as a documentarian — civil rights. It causes me to think back over my years in New York City and confirms for me, I have lived the American Dream. Schneps Media

Letters to the Editor Gail Fox

Faster than St. Vincent’s To The Editor: Re “Assessing Northwell’s stand-alone E.D.” (news article, April 18): Much as I miss St. Vincent’s Hospital, I do not miss its emergency room. At St. Vincent’s, I waited hours and hours before anyone was free to examine me, and more hours to be admitted into a hospital bed. By contrast, I was taken as an emergency to Lenox Hill Greenwich Village and was seen immediately. It took only a few minutes, with the use of specialized equipment, for me to be diagnosed with an AFib stroke. Within an hour, I was rushed by ambulance to Lenox Hill Hospital and instantly admitted to a semi-private room. That was on a Monday. I was treated and sent home with proper medications on Wednesday. Who knows? I might still have been waiting in the emergency room at St. Vincent’s before a room opened for me. I thank my lucky stars for the Lenox Health Greenwich Village emergency department! Susan E. Meyer

This is not for us To The Editor: Re “Visioning and planning report coming soon” (A Salute to Union Square, May 2): This is really all about attracting more tourists and bowing down to the upwardly mobile portion of residents. It is a continuation of the Bloomberg years, when the big corporations and rich people were the only ones that mattered. This is about catering to people from other parts of the country and the world who came to live in the city because it is “fun” and “exciting,” but then once they settled in, they gentrified it and turned it into a milquetoast strip mall. Union Square Park and its surrounding areas are among the last standing remnants of how amazing our city used to be before the gentrification of the ’80s. They ruined the East Village. They moved in and cast out the mom-andpop businesses and displaced all the people who had lived

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The problem is cars

PHOTO BY ALEJANDRA O’CONNELL-DOMENECH

Ar tist Danielle Mastrion recently painted a fresh Beastie Boys mural at Rivington and Ludlow Sts., which hip-hop advocate LeRoy McCar thy has been pushing to co-name Beastie Boys Square.

in the surrounding areas all their lives, the ones who raised future generations here and contributed to the culture that made up the beautiful cornucopia of the area and the city as a whole. They turned it into a place where only the rich can live and where chain stores flourish. New York has lost most of its vital elements that once made it fun, exciting and one of the greatest art centers of the world. If Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat and so many others who blessed this city were alive today, they would be horrified to see what has become of this once amazingly eclectic and beautiful city. We don’t need pop-up food kiosks. We don’t need performance space that will congest an overly congested area. Carla Parsi

‘Experiment by Ph.D.’s’ To The Editor: Re “Thrown under the bus on 14th” (op-ed, by Elissa Stein, May 2): The 14th St. “experiment” needs to be rethought. This was designed by newly minted Ph.D.’s who do not live here. Let’s halt it now. How about feet on the ground from Department of Transportation and NYC Transit Authority top staffers to see the reality and direct traffic? Great op-ed.

To The Editor: Re “Thrown under the bus on 14th” (op-ed, by Elissa Stein, May 2): You are aware that the buffer right now is paint on the road and does not block any vehicle from passing another vehicle if the driver wishes to. I am pretty sure that you have observed the 12th and 13th Sts. bike lanes being used as de facto loading zones for delivery, utility and passenger drop-off and pickup vehicles. I agree with you that street space needs to be allocated for contractors and delivery services. Let’s go together to 11th St., which still has free parking on both sides, with a tape measure and see how many cars are being stored on the street and are never moved except to be double-parked, engines running, twice a week for an hour for street cleaning. The street space cannot accommodate parking for residents, people who work in the neighborhood, students at local colleges and law schools, visitors, people visiting doctors, doing local shopping. Choresh Wald

Co-naming overload? To The Editor: Re “Beastie Boys street conaming campaign rocks on” (news article, May 2): Will the city name one corner with three names? It’s already Rabbi Yaakov Spiegel Way and Rivington and Ludlow Sts. Clayton Patterson E-mail letters, maximum 250 words, to news@thevillager. com or fax to 212-229-2790 or mail to The Villager, Letters to the Editor, 1 MetroTech North, 10th floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201. Please include phone number for confirmation. The Villager reserves the right to edit letters for space, grammar, clarity and libel. Anonymous letters will not be published.

May 9, 2019

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Fulton Houses fearful over RAD’ical plan BY GABE HERMAN

A

ctivists and residents have been rallying at the Robert Fulton Houses to demand their voices be heard against the city’s proposed plan to let a private developer build on part of the complex’s land. Groups at the rally included Fight for NYCHA, Community Control of Land Use, and Not One More Block. Noted civil-rights attorney Norman Siegel also spoke at the protest on Sun., April 28, which drew about 60 people, most them local residents at the Fulton Houses. The Chelsea public housing development includes 11 buildings between Ninth to Tenth Aves. and W. 16th and 19th Sts. “You can fight back,” Siegel told the Fulton denizens. “You don’t have to accept this,” he said of the city’s plan. Siegel outlined the administration’s proposal, which he said would include knocking down two buildings and building a tower on a parking lot. He said that, over all, three mixed-income towers would be built, one 14 stories, one 25 stories, and another 28 stories. The attorney explained that the city and NYCHA would keep ownership of the land but lease it to private developers under a program called RAD, or Rental Assistance Demonstration. The city hopes to raise funds through the plan for the Fulton Houses, which need $168 million in repairs over the next five years. Siegel led a chant of “Keep public housing public!” He said the city’s plan would fundamentally change what public housing means. New York was a leader 80 years ago for public housing in America, Siegel noted. The First Houses development, at E. Second and Third Sts. at Avenue A, was one of the first public housing projects in the country. “And it works,” he said of public housing. The majority of the NYCHA residents should have to agree to the RAD plan for it to be implemented, Siegel said. “We have to bring people together,” he stressed. “Lawyers, organizers, but all of you, to tell people that there’s strength in unity.” Siegel asked why money couldn’t be raised through a 1 or 2 percent tax on the gross profits of corporations with more than 1,000 employees. And he asked what would happen if President Trump decided to stop funding the RAD program, or if rents wound up being higher under RAD than public housing rents? “There are serious problems here,” he warned. For a RAD project, two public meetings are required to be held, Siegel noted. But he and everyone in the crowd said that there had been none yet, and Schneps Media

PHOTO BY MARNI HALASA

Fulton Houses residents have been holding rallies against the city’s rebuilding plan.

PHOTO BY MARNI HALASA

Tenants said it’s a slipper y slope, that redevelopment at Fulton Houses would open the floodgates.

the mayor and city officials had not even come to meet with residents, either.

Siegel said a coalition needed to be formed, to communicate with the city TVG

and collect facts. “We have to confront them,” he said. Also at the rally was Marni Halasa, a Chelsea resident for 27 years who founded the advocacy group Community Control of Land Use. “The community needs to not just have input in land-use decisions, they should have the final say,” Halasa told the rally. “NYCHA residents need to come together and organize, to determine your own destiny.” In a comment written to this paper, Halasa noted that under 26,000 previous RAD conversions of public housing apartments, 57 percent experienced a rent increase, according to a 2018 report by the Government Accountability Office. This can lead to eviction for those unable to pay, Halasa wrote, and especially impacts seniors and disabled people on fi xed incomes. “We believe this is the next big fight of ordinary citizens against luxury development, and we will win,” she said. “New Yorkers need to understand that this phase is the Fulton Houses, but the next phase will be the Chelsea Elliott Houses, then the next phase will be the permanent affordable housing complexes of Penn South — and the next leading even to perhaps your own apartment. Luxury development knows no bounds and has no morality when it comes to displacement,” the activist said. One of the Fulton Houses residents who spoke at the rally, Amelia, has lived there four years, but said most residents had been there at least 30 years, and that there was a strong sense of community. “I was embraced by this community, and you don’t see that anymore,” she said at the April 28 rally. “We cannot afford to let them create more homelessness. Don’t let them take away our sense of community. Without us, there is no community. We create the diversity of this neighborhood. “They’re going to make promises and then the promises will go out the window when elections are done,” she added. “De Blasio was running with the black vote, got in and then stabbed us all in the back.” She said the community needed to branch out and encourage people to come to more rallies. Siegel echoed this sentiment, saying there should be more meetings, with attendance growing at each one. And Siegel said activists would go to court if the city doesn’t follow the rules of public engagement. “Take one step at a time and begin now,” he advised the crowd about organizing. “It’s not right for the mayor to tell you your future. You have to decide what your future is.” May 9, 2019

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The Yext Building, as it will be known, is located at 15th St. and Ninth Ave., between the Apple Store to the south and Chelsea Market to the north.

Tech co. Yext says yes to Chelsea H.Q. BY GABE HERMAN

T

he tech company Yext will move its global headquarters to a new building in Chelsea, the company and Governor Cuomo recently announced. Yext is a cloud-technology company that provides software to businesses to help organize information. The company was founded in New York City in 2006. It has since expanded globally, with 1,000 employees worldwide, including 600 in New York City. Yext currently has local offices at 1 Madison Ave., between E. 23rd and 24th Sts. The new headquarters, to be called the Yext Building, will be at 61 Ninth Ave., at W. 15th St., across

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from Google’s New York City headquarters and Chelsea Market, and adjacent to the Apple Store. Its offices will be above the new Starbucks Reserve Roastery. The nine-story building will enclose 142,500 square feet. Yext plans to invest $150 million in the new headquarters over 12 years, and create 500 new jobs over a five-year span. The state has offered up to $6 million in performance-based Excelsior Tax Credits over 10 years, through the Empire State Development, the state’s chief economic development agency. The full incentive will only be given if 500 jobs are created in the next five years, and then those jobs and the company’s existing jobs

in the city are retained for another five years. “Tech companies like Yext are thriving and expanding across the state thanks to New York’s top-notch talent, educational institutions and cultural resources,” Cuomo said in a statement. “We are proud to support companies that invest in New York State and grow our innovation hubs, which in turn attract more worldclass businesses and further elevate our 21st-century economy.” The company is planning a March 2020 move into the new office building, which was originally going to be for Aetna Inc. But Aetna scrapped those plans after being taken over by CVS Health Corp. “Yext is excited to unveil The Yext

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Building, and our plans to expand Yext with 500 new jobs in our hometown of New York,” said Howard Lerman, Yext’s founder and C.E.O. “We founded Yext as three guys in a single room in Columbus Circle. More than a decade later, our innovative products, world-class team, and massive opportunities are being felt around the world.” State Senator Brad Hoylman gave a resounding “yes” to Yext’s announcement. “Thank you, Yext,” he said. “I greatly appreciate your commitment to creating 500 new jobs in my Senate district, as well as the efforts of Empire State Development and Governor Cuomo to solidify New York’s tech industry.”

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Basquiat show a perfect Brant opener BY BOB KR ASNER

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he Brant Foundation has settled into the East Village with a splash. A beautifully renovated former Con Edison substation at 421 E. Sixth St. is the second location for the foundation’s private museum, the first being a repurposed stone barn in Greenwich, Connecticut. The museum estimates when its inaugural show — a Jean-Michel Basquiat survey — closes May 15, more than 100,000 people will have seen it. The initial block of 50,000 tickets — issued for free through its Web site — were snatched up before the show opened, and more were provided later. Schools, museums and other nonprofit groups came through on days when the museum was closed to the public, and East Village residents were let in without tickets if they provided proof of residence. Peter Brant, founder of The Brant Foundation Art Study Center, stated via e-mail that, “Basquiat has been a cornerstone of the East Village art scene for decades. So to bring his work back to the neighborhood that inspired it is a great privilege — as is to share his legacy with the community that was fundamental in shaping it.” There was little doubt that the show would be a success. Basquiat, who lived and worked on Great Jones St. and died there at age 27, has become a legend. His paintings are coveted bluechip items. One particularly notable sale was an untitled painting on canvas that went at Sotheby’s for more than $100 million. The

Brant exhibit — a smaller version of a show in Paris — features 71 works. Included are some, like “Hollywood Africans,” on loan from the Whitney, that were not seen abroad. The show is deserving of its accolades and the diversity of the crowd attests to the breadth of the artist’s popularity. Fashionable couples took the opportunity to pose for Instagram posts in front of the artwork, elderly women discussed composition and color, while kids related to the artist’s wild style. “I think it’s really cool — abstract and crazy!” remarked Sadie, 10. Her friend Chloe, also 10, agreed about the cool factor. “It looks like there could be more in some of the paintings — they look like they are not finished,” she noted. Former rapper and model Grege Morris mused on the subtext of the paintings. “I’m getting a lot of spiritual feeling from his work,” she said. “I understand why people relate to him.” Her cousin, Myles Morris, remarked on the dichotomy between style and substance. “He composed his paintings like he was 130 years old, but he painted with a child’s voice,” he said. “That’s hard to do.” Morris also noted that the price tags on Basquiat’s work have become a symbol of the neighborhood’s gentrification. Even if you can’t afford the real thing, there’s always the gift shop — soon to open online, as well. People were snatching up the most popular items — $100 hoodies — as well as socks, notecards, clipboards, even yoga mats. “Basquiat would have been O.K. with that,” noted art dealer Patrick Fox. “He was friends

with Haring and Warhol, after all.” Fox, who knew the artist well enough to have spent a night making ice cream with him, found the show “incredible.” “It is a little bombastic, which was to be expected,” he said. “I’ve

PHOTOS BY BOB KRASNER

The new Brant Foundation museum is in a former Con Ed building on E. Sixth St.

seen it a few times already, and the first time through I was crying in the stairwell.” It’s hard not to be affected by the exuberance of the work, which fills the space with energy. Geraldo, a security guard on the fourth

Going wild photographing the wild ar t.

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May 9, 2019

floor, gets plenty of feedback from the museumgoers. “They love it !” he said. “The reactions are priceless.” The next show at the new museum has not been announced, but Basquiat is going to be a tough act to follow. As actor Michael Donaldson summed up, “It’s a brilliant exhibition in a perfect space.” For more information, visit www.brantfoundation.org .

Expressing their selfies. TVG

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COURTESY FALIRO HOUSE

Nicolas “Nick” Nicolaou, who owns Village East Cinema, is the subject of the documentar y “The Projectionist.”

Movie theaters through an owner’s eyes BY GABE HERMAN

T

he documentary “The Projectionist,” which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 28, profiles Nicolas “Nick” Nicolaou, who has owned movie theaters in the city for decades. Through Nicolaou’s story, New York director Abel Ferrara highlights how the city’s cinemas have changed, and by extension how the city landscape itself has morphed over time. Ferrara has been making films since the ’70s, including the gritty 1992 classic “Bad Lieutenant.” Nicolaou grew up in Cyprus, and the film features scenes shot there, showcasing its beauty and rich, diverse culture. He dropped out of school around age 12 to become a fisherman and help support his family, and came to New York as a young man in 1970. While attending school in New York, Nicolaou found work in movie theaters. At the time, the city had lots of independent movie theaters and lots of adult theaters. Nicolaou worked in both, as an usher and doorman, and selling concessions and tickets, and, in general, doing whatever was needed. His first job was on the Upper East Side at the Baronet Schneps Media

and talking with Nicolaou in Cyprus and on the streets of New York. It adds the filmmaker’s own perspective on appreciating New York’s movie theater history, and contributes to the film’s relaxed feel. Movie clips are shown throughout, as different eras and types of movies are discussed. This can add to the documentary at times, but the clips of adult movies that are shown feel unnecessary and could be done without. But the work is successful in telling the immigrant story of Nicolaou, and

and Coronet Theaters. As the ’70s moved along, he was able to save money and move into ownership of some theaters. He owned adult theaters because they were a reliable source of income, and also independent theaters, like the D.W. Griffith on E. 59th St., because he fell in love with cinema and the moviegoing experience. In the film, he describes the transformative “magic” that movies can have. “It hit me in my soul,” he said. This is why he continues to operate independent theaters today and insists on defying the corporate takeovers that started in the 1980s. Today, Nicolaou owns Cinema Village, at 22 E. 12th St., along with Bay Ridge’s Alpine Cinemas and Forest Hills’ Cinemart. He cares about providing movies for the public that bring the community together for an experience. He notes that he could make a lot more money with Cinema Village by using the building in some other way, but movies matter to him. “Movie theaters give character to the neighborhood,” he says in the film. “Movie theaters give life.” Director Ferrara appears on screen throughout the documentary, walking

through him how Gotham’s theaters have changed, including the rise of corporate multiplexes, and the decline of adult theaters in the Giuliani era. And how Nicolaou is trying to hold on to some amount of independence and community feeling in the city’s theaters. “The Projectionist”’s last Tribeca Film Festival showing was May 3. The film has not yet received a general release date.

212 - 254 - 1109 | www.theaterforthenewcity.net | 155 First Ave. NY, NY 10003

SON OF THE SUN KNOCK IT OFF! A Musical for the soul

:A Farce

Written & Directed by

Written & Directed by

Thursday - Sunday

Thursday - Sunday

May 9 - May 19

May 9 - May 19

Thu - Sat 8PM

Thu - Sat 8PM

Sun 3PM

Sun 3PM

All Seats: $18

All Seats: $18

Michael Vazquez

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Peter Zachari

FREE! FREE! FREE! The Lower East Side Festival of the Arts May 24, 25 & 26 6PM - 1AM Theater, Music, Dance Film, Cabaret, Poetry May 9, 2019

23


      Fri, May 10th " / 

Wed, May 15th" / 

78 6:30pm | Somewhere to Be (1 hr 16m)

7B8 $ C%  7 ;  4:00pm | The Washing Society (44m) - Free Shorts: Division Ave (14m) | All In A Day’s Work (10m) 7E8%G & 5-2   2C    - D      6:00pm | Doors Open for Panel Guests 6:30pm | The Manhattan Front (1 hr 26m) | Followed by SAG-AFTRA Panel 7F8'   ;      ; $ CG 4 10:00pm | Sorry to Bother You (1 hr 51m)

12 .  %-(' $'.! $)$0$45.6"0$ !0$$%01"#4 Shorts: Division Ave (14m)

786"   " ) 4- + 49+ -'  : 8:00pm | Councilwoman (57m) Shorts: 50 days: The 2018 Chicago Hotel Workers’ Strike (16m)

78'  1 ;      <  10:00pm | Sorry to Bother You (1 hr 51m) Shorts: Tick Tock (15m)

Sat, May 11th" / 

%-(' $ 1 )$.6()-"(!- $")-.=$!%-(-,10!%%'$

7>8 5:30pm | The Devil We Know (1 hr 35m) Shorts: NYSNA 2018 Year In Review (5m) | Lâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Eau Est La Vie: The Fight At Standing Rock Continues In the Bayous of Louisiana (10m) | The Reason Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re Still Here (15m) 7?8+ 1  + @,  0  9$A2  : 7:30pm | Dear Walmart (59 min) Shorts: Triangle Fire (4m) | NYSNA 2018 Year In Review (5m) | Birth Of A Union (20m) 7B8 %C <D 7- 5- , ;  4 9:45pm | Final Cutz (1 hr 26m) | Zombie Comedy Costume Contest! Shorts: Against the Wind (13m)

Sun, May 12th" / 

)-7761 )$0@%*-64 ,!0*%%-/$ )$$-0 )-.*.1.'#$%4 7E8  %  -   4 2:30pm | Tito and The Birds (1 hr 13m) - Half price for moms and kids Shorts: Flip the Switch (10m)

7F8 4:30pm | The Nuns, The Priests, and The Bombs (1 hr 27m) Shorts: That One-Tenth Of Good (7m)

78,  .+2 % CD%G H. %C 7:15pm | Who Killed Lt. Van Dorn? (1 hr 20m) Shorts: Triangle Fire (4m) | Putting Out Fires: The School Bus Crisis of Richmond County (12m)

Mon, May 13th" / 

78 '@1D!" $ % 4:00pm | The Mayorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Race (1 hr 20m) - Free 78=  022&++ C .2H 6:30pm | Trouble Finds You (31m) | Listen to My Song (48m) Shorts: Boricua - Shouting On Sunset Park (19m)

78- 1  4 8:30pm | Buenos Aires, The City At Sleep (50m) Shorts: March (12m) | Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t Give Up Your Voice! (40m)

Tues, May 14th

" /  78+57 5= $ % 4:00pm | Madrigal for A Living Poet (1 hr 15m) - Free 7>8)@6*ID125.747 '% 7%  6:30pm | Call Me Intern (1 hr 10m) Shorts: Lambeth Lights (24m)

7?81,C-. ,   4 8:30pm | Undeterred (1 hr 16m) Shorts: Dad Milks Cows In Texas (8m) | Lâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Eau Est La Vie: The Fight At Standing Rock Continues In the Bayous of

Louisiana (10m)

%-(' $ 1%-=- 0-5+=--.*- )1+ 1% -6'.!1.1.-(1+,'*=$ !(

Shorts: White Sauce Hot Sauce (19m)

Thurs, May 16th " / 

%-(' $ 1 )$!.*$7$.*$. *0!/$0%='!(* !(%-,1'  )$(!$%,$)!.* )$=!=$"1.16 78 4:00pm | Rice (32m) - Free

Shorts: The Black Mountain (15m re-cut) | White Sauce Hot Sauce (19m)

78'D=7D C5,  @)  %   7:00pm | Uberland (54m) Shorts: Against the Wind (13m) | Autonomous Transit: Fight for Jobs and Safety (4m) 78) 6 "D!  +* ! .C 8:45pm | Run the Meter (38m) Shorts: Looking Through the Bamboos (8m) | Freedom to Drive (16m) 78$ C%C 1G <D "7+  10:30pm | ENCORE SCREENING | Final Cutz (1 hr 26m)

Fri, May 17th7$)J

78 + 1G 7D C$2   5.%  5%22   %  9,  4:97$$,$0%70!/- $$/$. :

Sat, May 18th

*"EE-   7>8 6:30pm Doors | THE GREEN BOOK Play, Concert Reading with author Calvin Ramsey + 7 actors. Honoring The National Writers Union

Sun, May 19th *"EE-   7?8

1PM | 5th Annual Activist Filmmakers Bootcamp w. Third World Newsreel! Seed and Spark! Guests

Mon, May 20th%'.6$2 %  +1' -   7B8

4:30 PM | Frontline Films | UA Local 1 Plumbers Tell Stories 92  :

701=0-E8

6:45 PM | Phansi: A South African Story of Precarious Workers Shorts: Mancala (3m) | Tantalum (5m)

Tues, May 21st+' -   7F8

4:30 PM | Frontline Films | IBEW Local3 Apprentices Tell stories

78%    !D(C -     (D0   6:30 PM | Union Time: Fighting for Workersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Rights - Encore Presentation

Wed, May 22nd

7"C"29= 2 5,: 78 7PM | Music & Film Celebration for WUFF 8 with Selection of Encore Shorts, Color Collage, Saint Mela & very special guests Say She She.

Thurs, May 23rd7 %   0 2 ) 78.6"0 0C4

6:30pm | Somewhere to Be - Encore presentation (1 hr 16m) Shorts (To Precede): Triangle Fire (4m) | Plenty to Say: The Radical Murals of Mary Perry Stone (9m) | Lâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Eau Est La Vie: The Fight At Standing Rock Continues In the Bayous of Louisiana (10m)

!"#$ %&'((%")$*'($|+'+$,%! $-.*$/$. ,0! $bit.ly/2pzzrai 24

May 9, 2019

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Schneps Media


Manhattan Happenings

Dealing with the stress of war and loss in “Friendly’s Fire.”

BY LINCOLN ANDERSON

ENVIRONMENT E-recycling: The Meatpacking Business Improvement District is hosting an electronic waste-recycling event on Fri., May 10, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bring your old phones, laptop computers, printers, batteries, monitors, mice, TVs, VCRs, DVDs, phones and more to dispose of them and help keep our environment healthy. South side of W. 14th St., between Eighth and Ninth Aves. Co-sponsored by the Lower East Side Ecology Center and made possible by Council Speaker Corey Johnson. For questions about bulk drop-offs or other information, e-mail hello@meatpacking-district.com .

THEATER Fight for sanity:Rising Sun Performance Company presents the New York premiere of John Patrick Bray’s “Friendly’s Fire,” an homage to Western movies and he-man action figures, and an exploration of the lengths to which a man will go to preserve his friend’s sanity, and to remember his brother, who died in service of this country. Directed by Anna Hogan. Through Sun., May 19, at the Theater at the 14th Street Y, 344 E. 14th St. The 7 p.m. performance on Mon., May 13, will feature a post-show talk back and Q&A with the cast, who Schneps Media

will talk about the process they used in their roles. This performance contains adult themes, sexual situations, violence, gunshots, adult language, and possible triggers for those with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Tickets $30 at door, $25 advance/ online, students (under age 25) and seniors $15, veterans and active military $15. Performances every day but Tuesday at 3 p.m., 5 p.m. and 8 p.m., depending on the day. For more information, visit www.14streety.org/, or contact info@14streety.org, or the box office, at 646-395-4310.

MUSIC 50-plus years of Dylan:Early Roman Kings will perform the music of Bob Dylan at Joe’s Pub, at 425 Lafayette St., on Tues., May 14, at 7 p.m. Dylan’s mercurial career will be mined for hidden gems — including his lyrics on peace and war — as well as the mother-lode hits. Tony Trischka is considered to be one of the most influential banjo players in the roots-music world. A 2012 U.S. Artists Friends Fellow, Trischka has, for more than 45 years, inspired generations of bluegrass and acoustic musicians with the many innovative and historical voices he has brought to the instrument. Early Roman Kings are Tony Trischka (banjo, pedal steel); Stash Wyslouch (guitar, vocals); Sean Trischka(drums, vocals); and, Jared Engel (bass). Tickets

FILE PHOTO BY TEQUILA MINSKY

$20. For more information, www.publictheater.org/ Joes-Pub-at-The-Public/.

KIDS Easy riders:Kids will ditch their training wheels and learn to bike at Mercer Playground, on Mercer St. between Bleecker and W. Third Sts., on Sat., May 18, from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. The Bleecker Area Merchants and Residents Association (BAMRA) and Bike New York will be on a roll at this fun and free

TVG

Kids getting the hang of it at a previous Learn To Bike event at Mercer Playground.

event. Kids should bring their bikes and helmets. Bike New York’s instructors help parents teach their children how to balance, pedal, start, stop and steer a bicycle. Space is limited so, preregister at https://www.bike.nyc/education/programs/learn-to-ride-kids/ and scroll to the May 18 Mercer Playground event. For questions or to help out, contact Terri Cude at tc.tcude.com .

May 9, 2019

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May 9, 2019

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New ferry, equine fest for Gov Island season BY GABE HERMAN

T

he Trust for Governors Island has announced its full lineup for the upcoming 2019 season, with new events, more ferry service and extended hours. The public season runs from May 1 to Oct. 31. The island will be open daily and include late-night hours on Fridays and Saturdays, from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The island will be open 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on weekdays. The Trust is adding a new 400-passenger ferry to its fleet starting in June. The new boat will run to Lower Manhattan and allow for more frequent service, including on weekends when a ferry will be available every 20 minutes.

Ferries will run every day from the Battery Maritime Building at 10 South St. Weekend ferries will also run to Brooklynâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Pier 6 at Brooklyn Bridge Park. Ferries will be free during the opening week, from May 1 to May 5. Adults and children age 12 and above normally pay $3 round trip. Passengers also ride free on weekends before noon. NYC Ferry will also service Governors Island on weekends, beginning Memorial Day weekend. As for events, on May 4 there will be the First Annual Opening Weekend ShinDIG, a community volunteer event hosted by the Friends of Governors Island. In June, there will be the 14th Jazz Age Lawn Party, and the Porch Stomp PHOTO BY ERICA PRICE

The Jazz Age Lawn Party will return to Governors Island in June.

folk festival. A new event will be a competitive equestrian series, the Longines Global Champions Tour, which will have its city debut there in September. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re excited to kick off another season for New Yorkers to experience the culture and natural beauty of Governors Island,â&#x20AC;? said Mayor Bill de Blasio. â&#x20AC;&#x153;With a new ferry and extended hours, more New Yorkers will be able to enjoy the island than ever before.â&#x20AC;? Other events will include the New York City Poetry Festival, the Japan Performing Arts Festival and the Vendy Awards, which features top street food in the city. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Governors Island has continued to grow into a welcoming green space, and I am thrilled to see all of the new

PHOTO BY ERICA PRICE

Having fun at Holi on Governors Island.

amenities that will be available to the public this summer season,â&#x20AC;? said Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I hope all New Yorkers will take advantage of the increased ferry service, extended hours, many food vendors, and free events that will take place there this season.â&#x20AC;? Over all, there will be 70 free events and activities on Governors Island during the 2019 season, the Trust announced. September will also see the opening of the islandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s new Arts Center, which is being run by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. The Arts Center will feature themes on local ecology and sustainability in its inaugural programs. More information on Governors Islandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 2019 public season can be found at govisland.com.  !        @ #"

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The Jazz Age Lawn Par ty will return to Governors Island in June.

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May 9, 2019

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May 9, 2019

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No stop-work order for Amsterdam tower BY ALEJANDR A Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;CONNELLDOMENECH

A

New York Supreme Court judge on April 30 denied a preliminary injunction that would have temporarily halted construction on the 51-story tower project at 200 Amsterdam Ave. â&#x20AC;&#x153;One floor is going up every three or four days,â&#x20AC;? said Rachel Mazur, a fellow in urban land-use law at the Municipal Art Society. Along with M.A.S., the Committee for Environmentally Sound Development is suing the Department of Buildings, the Board of Standards and Appeals and the developers, Amsterdam Avenue Redevelopment Associates. On March 15, Justice M. Franc Perry overruled the cityâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s decision to grant a permit for the 668-foot building, at W. 69th St., and ordered the B.S.A. to go back and re-evaluate the permit. But the decision did not result in a stop-work order or a temporary restraining order like the nonprofits, community and local politicians wanted. But opponents were hopeful D.O.B. would halt the construction as the permit was re-evaluated. But construction did not stop. Opponents argue the future skyscraper sits on a zoning lot illegally configured to allow a larger tower than zoning permits by cobbling together development rights from portions of neighboring properties. The Committee for Environmentally Sound Development argues that this goes against a zoning resolution that requires the combination of whole tax lots, according to reporting from 6sqft. Residents and local politicians Councilmember Helen Rosenthal and Borough President Gale Brewer believe that the massive building would negatively impact the quality of life. The tower would block sunlight and represent â&#x20AC;&#x153;Midtown creepâ&#x20AC;? in the residential area. The two current development partners were not responsible for creating the shape of the lot. The companies bought the site from the previous own-

A detail of a design rendering of the top of 200 Amsterdam Ave.

er in 2015. According to SJP Properties, one of the partners, 200 Amsterdam Ave. fully conforms with all zoning laws upheld by the two city agencies responsible for interpreting them, D.O.B. and the B.S.A. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The opposition has resorted to applying political pressure while overlooking the last 40 years of zoning history, during which several buildings have been built and occupied under the exact same zoning standards,â&#x20AC;? a SJP representative said in an e-mail. The representative went on to say that the company hopes the city agencies will continue to enforce the law in a fair manner and not change rules retroactively. The SJP rep said that 200 Amsterdam Ave. will be good for the neighborhood since it will generate more than $7 million annually in property taxes and more than $40 million in transfer and mansion taxes. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Add it up and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s over $100 million over 10 years,â&#x20AC;? the spokesperson said.

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Real Estate

Can single moms afford to buy in Manhattan? her to think beyond the Upper East Side. I just sold a two-bedroom in Harlem in a brand-new building with excellent amenities for under $900,000. Condo, so only 10 percent down. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The neighborhood is full of families,â&#x20AC;? she continued. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Morningside Park has a beautiful waterfall and pond where kids feed the friendly turtles. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s even a new Levain Bakery on Frederick Douglass and W. 117th where, unlike the other locations, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s never a line!â&#x20AC;?

BY MARTHA WILKIE

F

acebook is full of helpful groups for every possible interest. Parenting groups in particular offer a chance to give and get advice on many New Yorkersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; favorite topics: real estate and schools. Recently, a newly single mom asked for advice about buying a home on a teacherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s salary. Crazy pipe dream? She wants to stay on the Upper East Side, would be a first-time homebuyer, and doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have the funds for a big down payment. Encouragement poured in. One mom found middle-income housing through waiting lists, another had luck with H.D.F.C. (Housing Development Fund Corporation) co-ops in East Harlem, and others obtained F.H.A. (Federal Housing Administration) loans for first-time buyers with low down payments. One naysayer was less sanguine, pointing out that saving on the down payment means borrowing more. One good tip: Sponsor units can be more affordable and often donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t require board approval. The catch is that they can be in sad shape, since often a rent-controlled tenant lived there for decades without renovating and left the unit â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and this mortal coil â&#x20AC;&#x201D; at the same time. Rachel Koenig is an agent with Compass and also parenting solo. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hard to navigate life in New York as a single mom, but she has options,â&#x20AC;? Koenig said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I encourage

If Momâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s on a tight budget, The Gilber t on First could be a good option.

Lovely one bedroom, one bath on E. 76th St., with charming kitchen. With a Murphy bed in the large living room, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d be perfect. Co-op, so need at least 20 percent down. (Compass.com/listing/215717428565463921/ view) In Lenox Hill, a nicely renovated one-bedroom, one-bath sponsor condo with a large living room is asking $595,000. (BHSusa.com/manhattan/upper-east-side/460east-79th-street-3d/condo/19480874) On E. 79th, a two-bedroom, one-bath sponsor unit is listed at $875,000. (Compass.com/listing/242542717140213345/ view) If she ends up renting, the Gilbert on First in East Harlem is a new building offering attractive affordable units â&#x20AC;&#x201D; mixed-rate and rent-stabilized (via a lottery), studios start at $328! (TheGilbertOnFirst.com)

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