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CONSTRUCTION - The Local East Village Blog - NYTimes.com


Post tagged with

CONSTRUCTION

East Fourth Street to Lose Massive Canvases


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ArtUp Murals on East Fourth at BowerySanna Chu ArtUp Murals on East Fourth at Bowery

The neighborhood’s cultural district is about to lose some of its color.

With water-main repairs on Cooper Square just about done, the construction containers that were being used as canvases on East Fourth Street are not long for this world.

“The containers are still needed while the final touches are completed on the project; they should be removed by the end of January,” said a spokesperson for the New York City Department of Design and Construction.

Fourth Arts Block and No Longer Empty first jazzed up the containers with a Skullphone painting in September of last year, and works by H. Veng Smith and other artists followed.

Their disappearance isn’t the only unfortunate byproduct of the construction project’s final phase: a reader commenting on our post about an accident at East Seventh Street noted that crossing Cooper Square has become a harrowing experience.
Read more…


Brauhaus Brouhaha: High Levels of Lead at Beer Hall Site


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2012-07-23 12.52.22Timothy Davis Construction work at Paulaner Brauhaus.

High levels of lead have been found in dust that shot up from the incoming Paulaner Brauhaus and blanketed an upstairs apartment, displacing a family of seven and causing the city to issue a stop work order.

The dust-up occurred last Wednesday at 265-267 Bowery, where the brewhouse and beer hall is being built on the ground floor. On June 25, ceiling work sent a plume of dust through the floorboards of a second-floor loft, forcing its residents to seek shelter elsewhere while testing for toxic materials was conducted.

Today, a health department representative said the levels of lead found in parts of the apartment were six times what the Environmental Protection Agency finds acceptable. According to the testing company’s report (posted below), the highest concentrations were found in the living room, where Mr. Davis said the children’s books and toys are kept.

Blood work taken from at least one of the five children is still out at the lab. Read more…


Overhaul of Standard East Village Gets $3 Million Price Tag


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IMG_3198Stephen Rex Brown Andre Balazs speaking to East Fifth Street block association.

That book nook isn’t the only new development at The Standard, East Village: hotel higher-ups are moving forward with plans for a overhaul of the ground floor, and according to Department of Buildings records, initial construction will cost over $3 million.

Last week, The Standard filed two applications for construction work and zoning changes to 25-33 Cooper Square. The first, requesting permission to modify egress on the first floor as well as other general construction, estimates a price tag of $2.4 million. The second, for similar work, predicts an additional expenditure of $610,000.
Read more…


The Day | Gun Bust at Union Square and 13 Other Morning Reads


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Found kittenSuzanne Rozdeba
Lost dogSuzanne Rozdeba

Good morning, East Village.

Take note, pet owners: the flyer above and another at right went up around the neighborhood recently.

The Post reports that Kenneth Moreno, the former police officer who was acquitted of raping a woman on duty but fired after being found guilty of official misconduct, is thinking about suing the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office for allegedly planting incriminating evidence.

You’ll recall baggies of heroin were found in Mr. Moreno’s locker, and woes at the stationhouse continue: The Post hears from a source that the last of four 9mm pistols stolen from the locker room was swiped after officers were assigned to patrol the room.

Speaking of guns, The Daily News reports that two teens were arrested at the Union Square station when police officers who stopped them for evading the fare found a pair of guns and two bulletproof vests on them. Read more…


On East First Street, Adam Yauch Lives On


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DanielleMastrionwMuralStephen Robinson Danielle Mastrion with her art.
FumeroStephen Robinson Fumero with his work-in-progress.

Less than a week after the death of Adam Yauch, a mural of him and his fellow Beastie Boys appeared on East First Street yesterday, part of “phase 3” of the Centre-fuge Public Art Project.

The painting by Brooklyn native Danielle Mastrion joined new works by five other artists – Fumero, Michael DeNicola, Jade Fusco, CRAM Concepts and Bishop 203 – on a metal construction trailer between First and Second Avenues. Since the street-art initiative was launched in January, the modular unit has served as a canvas for a new batch of artists every other month.

One of them, Fumero, recently painted a mural on the walls of The Strand. See another photo.


Mars Bar Site Hit With Stop Work Order


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IMG_3295Stephen Rex Brown The Mars Bar site today

The Department of Buildings smacked a partial Stop Work Order on the former Mars Bar site today. A sign posted on the plywood construction fence at First Street and Second Avenue, where a 12-story condo is being erected, indicates that “all chopping and saw cutting on foundation walls” must cease.

It’s uncertain what provoked the order (we’ll let you know what we hear from the D.O.B.), but it isn’t the first hiccup at 25 East First Street. According to paperwork, a partial Stop Work Order was served last month after the Department of Buildings received a complaint that a crane appeared to be unsafe, and an inspector found that the project’s engineer of record hadn’t signed off on it. That issue has now been resolved.

In December, before the dive bar was toppled, another stop work order was issued after a worker was injured during a ceiling collapse.


Expansion Explainer: Why Dogs Are Always at N.Y.U. 2031 Protests


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expansionexplainer

As Village residents await Borough President Scott Stringer’s recommendation early next month regarding N.Y.U.’s expansion plans, The Local is taking a look at the impacts of the project. Today, we’re examining the concerns surrounding the replacement of a dog run under the proposed development. Yesterday, we looked at the impact the proposal would have on three playgrounds in Greenwich Village. Check back for our coverage of concerns surrounding loss of light and the LaGuardia Community Garden.

Q.

So what does the future hold for the dog run at the corner of Houston and Mercer Streets should N.Y.U.’s expansion be approved?

A.
11-Dog Run-PN.Y.U. The proposed dog run.

The dogs and their roughly 300 owners at the Mercer-Houston Dog Run will have to be relocated to make way for the Zipper building, which will be 26 stories at its highest point. The building would extend almost the entire length of the south block along Mercer Street between Houston and Bleecker Streets. In addition to housing, academic, retail space and a hotel, the new structure would also hold the replacement for the Morton Williams Supermarket at the northwest corner of the south block. The university says the replacement grocery store would be fully operational before Morton Williams is demolished in 2018. Read more…


‘Year of the Jackhammer’ on the Bowery


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While on our daily perambulation on the Bowery, we noted that there is construction on nearly every block between St. Marks Place and East Houston Street. The experience was so intense we recreated it for our readers who can’t live it for themselves. Mouse over the cones, put on your headphones, and brace yourself for an immersive auditory experience.


Road Construction


N.Y.U. Supporters Tout Economic Benefits of Expansion


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P1000217Elizabeth Ferrara Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council said the plan would create much-needed construction jobs.

In the first rally of its kind, advocates of N.Y.U.’s controversial expansion gathered yesterday at City Hall calling on Borough President Scott M. Stringer to approve the plan.

About 35 people, business owners, union leaders, and construction workers among them, attended the roughly 15-minute gathering in support of the university’s proposal that would add four new buildings south of Washington Square Park.

“We’re here today asking Borough President Stringer to recognize that N.Y.U.’s growth strategy is an essential part of securing the financial future of small businesses in Greenwich Village,” said Tony Juliano, president of the local Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, which represents around 200 businesses in surrounding neighborhoods.

It was clear that the approval for the plan dubbed N.Y.U. 2031 is getting down to crunch time. The event amounted to a formal endorsement from the Building and Construction Trades Council, which is led by the influential Gary LaBarbera.
Read more…


Mars Bar Out, 7-Eleven In


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If you want a piece of Mars Bar, now’s the time to ask. As you can see in video shot this morning, the wall separating the old dive from its neighbor has come down, and construction workers are clearing away wooden beams.

Meanwhile, a few blocks away, the 7-Eleven that had been slated to open on the Bowery last week was accepting deliveries this morning. A worker on the scene said it would finally open this Friday (an early Christmas gift to the East Village?). We’ve asked corporate headquarters for the official word.

Have your own photos of the Mars Bar’s demise? Add them to The Local’s Flickr pool.


One Injured After Ceiling Collapses at Mars Bar Building


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Stephen Rex Brown Shots from the scene of the accident and photos of the demolition taken from an adjacent rooftop.

One construction worker suffered a leg injury after an accident on the third floor of the Mars Bar building at around 1:45 p.m.

A battalion chief with the Fire Department, Bob Sputch, said that the worker was removing a piece of ceiling when a beam collapsed, possibly breaking the worker’s leg. Several witnesses at the corner of Second Avenue and First Street said that the injury did not appear to be serious.

“If you’d heard the bang, you would have thought it was something serious. But I think he’s alright,” said Malik Johnson, a construction worker at the site. Read more…


A Flood on Second Avenue (This One Man-Made)


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Road workStephen Rex Brown

Workers with the city Department of Environmental Protection are pumping water out of a ditch in the middle of Second Avenue near St. Marks Place, blasting water into the bus lane and diverting another lane of traffic. The noisy water pumps drew many onlookers. The Local has a call into D.E.P. regarding the nature of the work; we’ll update as soon as we know more.

Update | 3:48 p.m. Here are the details from a D.E.P. spokeswoman: “A D.E.P. crew observed that a four-foot diameter brick sewer was broken. A D.E.P. contractor is excavating to repair it. We will place a plate to make the area safe while working. It will take a few days.”


Bleecker Businesses Say Subway Construction is a Summer Bummer


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IMG_0375Marit Molin Sherwin Zabala stands in front of the construction that he says is hurting his Downtown Floor Supplies store on Lafayette Street.

Three business owners at the corner of Lafayette and Bleecker Streets say that construction on a new subway passage is warding off customers, leading to their revenue plummeting by as much as 50 percent. Workers for the Metropolitan Transit Authority have been busy since 2009, building a passageway between the uptown 6 train at Bleecker Street and the Broadway-Lafayette station. Unfortunately for the businesses at the entrance to the downtown 6 train, the latest phase of work, which according to an M.T.A. spokesman started four weeks ago, requires a construction zone that occupies parking spaces in the area and forms a barrier in front of the three store entrances. Read more…


Board Opposes Plaza for 51 Astor


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Astor PlaceMeghan Keneally Thomas Balsley at Monday’s meeting.

Members of Community Board 3 voted unanimously Monday night to oppose plans for an outdoor plaza at the new 51 Astor Place because of questions about whether the design provides enough space for the public and fits aesthetically with the surrounding neighborhood.

The board’s Planning and Land Use committee said that it will not endorse the plaza project unless changes are made that take into account the historic nature of the area around 51 Astor and other design issues, including the placement of benches.

Work is set to begin in the next few days, and the construction of the mixed-use commercial tower is set to last for 17 months.

After listening to a presentation by Thomas Balsley, the designer in charge of planning the outdoor space that will accompany the new building on Astor Place, members of the public were given a chance to address the board.

Speakers, many of whom were opposed to the design, raised a range of issues about the project from its look and aesthetics to what some said was its failure to account for the historic nature of the district.

“It’s like it’s from some other city,” said Marilyn Appleberg, who was a part of the group that discussed the initial plans for the building when they were approved in 2002. “I was really disappointed.”

A final discussion on the plaza project will occur at the full community board meeting on July 26.


The Day | The Skyline’s New Addition


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WTC 1 from Canal and ChrystieMichael Natale
WTC 1

Good morning, East Village.

It’s a sight on the New York City skyline that’s been almost a decade in the making: the appearance of One World Trade Center. The GammaBlog has a collection of construction photos that show the tower poking up through the skyline (to the left of the traffic light in the image above, which was taken by community contributor Michael Natale at Canal and Chrystie Streets). That portion of the downtown skyline has been empty for far too long. By the way, an American flag stands atop the unfinished steel structure.

In neighborhood news, federal authorities say two East Village tattoo parlors were doubling as boutiques for illegal drugs. SiLive.com reports that two Staten Island residents were dealing designer drugs to tattoo parlors Addiction INK and Addiction NYC.  The dealers, Igor Kanchik, 31, and Steve Zhik, 30, were both charged in a federal drug sweep that netted a Washington state-based distributor and nine sellers.

The owner of d.b.a., a bar on First Avenue, was in critical condition Wednesday morning after being hit by a car while cycling on Canal Street. Ray Deter, 53, was taken to Bellevue Hospital, reports DNAinfo. The staff at the bar asks that well-wishers refrain from calling the bar, hospital or Mr. Deter’s home.

Finally, Mark Federman, the principal at East Side Community High School, told a group of locals that school officials closed the Open Road Park on 12th Street because of recent reports of the sale and use of marijuana on park grounds. The Local’s Chelsia Rose Marcius reports that there’s a good chance the park will reopen but with different hours of operation.


As 51 Astor Falls, A Cafe Will Close


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New York Film Academy Cafe at 51 Astor PlaceStephen Rex Brown The New York Film Academy Cafe is expected to close as developers begin demolition work on 51 Astor Place (below) in July.
51 Astor PlaceMeghan Keneally

Last night we told you that the demolition of 51 Astor Place would begin next month. Today, we confirmed what some have speculated: the destruction of the site will require the closure of one of the neighborhood’s only cafes with a large outdoor space.

The New York Film Academy Café at the corner of Astor Place and Third Avenue will be used as a staging ground for workers tearing down the six-story building next door, meaning the business will serve its last cup of coffee on June 30.

“A lot of our customers are really bummed,” said Jennifer Lee, 33, a cook at the café. “It’s a good spot. It’s rare to have a patio where people can lounge outdoors.”

Lee added that the majority of the six or seven employees still on the payroll were planning to go on unemployment.

But she bore her bosses no ill will. In fact, employees were told when the café replaced the Starbucks at that location last year that the job would be short-lived.

“They knew this was going to happen. They told us before the place was open,” Ms. Lee said.

A regular at the café, Lou Stoltz, said that he would miss the space.

New 51 Astor Place BuildingCourtesy of Sciame Construction Corp. A rendering of the planned development.

“It’s a great place to have my coffee, read my paper, do my Sudoku and just keep cool — like I’m doing now,” said Mr. Stolz, who has lived in the neighborhood for 50 years. “There’s an outdoor and an indoor space, even a smoking area. No one rushes you out. I hope they find a comparable location nearby.”

Mr. Stolz, who lives nearby at 10th and Stuyvesant Streets, added that he would even miss the building at 51 Astor Place.

“I’ll miss it, it’s been here since the 1950’s,” he said.

“I wish they’d build something here more along those lines,” Mr. Stolz added, gesturing toward the Cooper Union building. “Something more in keeping with the neighborhood.”


July Demolition Set for 51 Astor


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New 51 Astor Place BuildingCourtesy Sciame Construction Corp.An artists conception of how 51 Astor Place will look once development is completed. Demolition of the current site, below, will begin in July.
51 Astor PlaceMeghan Keneally

Construction officials announced tonight that they will begin demolishing the former Cooper Union Engineering Building July 1.

Representatives from Sciame Construction Corp. hosted a public hearing about the demolition of the building at 51 Astor Place, located between Eighth and Ninth Streets. They expect the entire construction process to take 17 months, finishing by December 2012.

Because the building was constructed in the 1950’s, there will be an initial 40-day abatement period where specialists will secure any hazardous materials, like asbestos which covers some pipes in the building. Then, following city demolition procedures, there will be a two week period before any actual demolition of the existing building occurs, meaning that the existing structure will not begin to be taken down until approximately the third week of August.

About 50 people who live near the site attended the meeting, and their biggest complaint was about the city-designated hours of construction which begin at 7 a.m.

Steven Colletta, vice president of Sciame, said that because of the city regulations and workers union hours, construction will generally occur between 7 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. and, as of right now, there are no plans to build on weekends, though permits for weekend work may be applied for if needed on a week to week basis.

The plan for the new building, which includes retail space, commercial offices, and a portion dedicated to education use, was completed and approved in 2002, leaving the design of a public outdoor area as the only issue up for debate.

Sciame repMeghan Keneally Construction officials at tonight’s meeting.

The new building, designed by Japanese architect Fumihiko Maki, will be multi-tiered with the highest point reaching 12 stories, and the lowest being dedicated to retail space and standing 4 stories. The plan for the outdoor space includes benches and area for flower arrangements. The plan will be finalized at an as-yet-undetermined Community Board 3 Land Use meeting in mid-July.


Workers Dismantling 35 Cooper


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Ian Duncan Men at work on the roof of 35 Cooper Square. Below: Views from inside the building show holes in the roof above a stairwell (top), and daylight pouring into the ground floor.
The stairwell of 35 Cooper Square open to the sky
Daylight pours into the first story of 35 Cooper Square

Update | 3:30 p.m. A team of three men was at work apparently tearing down the roof of 35 Cooper Square by hand this afternoon.

Behind its unlocked front door, the building had been completely stripped and holes knocked through the floors of the second and third stories. Workers threw bits of other wood and other debris down to the first floor. No power tools were heard to be in use, but a buzz saw lay idle on the roof. From across the street, workers appeared to be using hand saws on the building’s masonry.

The building’s stairs are intact, illuminated by a string of bulbs on a yellow wire, which snaked its way up to the roof.

At the unenclosed entrance to the roof, a worker in a flourescent yellow safety vest told The Local the site was off-limits.