Neighborhood Chatter

Written by Marissa Maier on . Posted in News Our Town Downtown, Our Town Downtown.


Sen. Daniel Squadron with Aixa Torres, Tenant Association President at Smith Houses. Photo courtsey of Sen. Daniel Squadron’s office

Pier 42 Tour Offers Glimpse of Future Park
Last week, New York state Sen. Daniel Squadron and the NYC Department of Parks and Recreation’s Manhattan Borough Commissioner William Castro led the first public tour of Pier 42 in the Lower Manhattan. The pair announced plans for interim recreational use, as the planning process for the pier’s redevelopment into a waterfront park gets under way.

The redevelopment of Pier 42, along with the completion of the East River waterfront park, will help create a continuous green ribbon around Lower Manhattan, connecting the East and West Sides as well as providing the Lower East Side and Chinatown with much-needed open space. Pier 42 is located on South Street at Montgomery Street on the Lower East Side. Currently, a public planning process to design and redevelop the pier is currently in progress, and the public is encouraged to participate in Community Board 3’s upcoming meeting on the Pier on Thursday, Oct. 4.

Also upcoming is a Waterfront Community Day at the Pier on Nov. 3 from noon to 4 p.m., which will be presented by the Hester Street Collective, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, the Lower East Side Waterfront Alliance, Sen. Squadron and the Parks Department.

Google Brings Local Business Online
This week, Sen. Charles E. Schumer announced that Google will host a series of “Get Your Business Online” events throughout the five boroughs. The program is designed to help small businesses get online, and Google has created a coalition, which includes Intuit and SCORE, to this end.
Last year, Google hosted a similar event in New York’s Capital Region, where they gave small businesses free, easy-to-build professional websites, a free customized domain name, web hosting for a year and a listing on Google Maps.
“Google’s events will connect small businesses with new customers by teaching businesses how to get online quickly and easily. Small businesses are the driving force behind NYC’s economic growth, and I am thrilled to see that Google is bringing this successful seminar to the tri-state region,” Schumer said in a statement.
On Oct. 17, the program will land in Manhattan at Google’s New York office at 111 Eighth Avenue.

Seward Approved by Council
Last week, a subcommittee of the City Council unanimously approved a modified version of the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA) plan for mix-used development.
As part of the revision of the plan, the City will add 100 more units to the development, with half of those priced at market rate and the others will be affordable units. In total, there will be 1,000 units in the SPURA development. A 15,000-square-foot parcel will also be set aside through 2023 as a potential public school site. The City has also committed to creating off-site affordable housing on Spring Street.
“I am proud that the SPURA development is one of the first projects in our City to so thoroughly incorporate community stakeholders into the RFP process,” noted Council Member Margaret Chin in a statement. “My goal was to make sure that the Lower East Side community has a role before and after this project is put out to bid by the City. As per my modifications, a community task force will help define the goals of the RFP, will provide feedback on proposals submitted by developers, and will consult with the City on the final selection. This City has committed to this process, and I couldn’t be more pleased with the outcome.”
This modified application will move on to City Planning, before a vote by the entire council, currently scheduled for Oct. 11.

Seaport Museum Seeks NYC Street Photographs for Upcoming Exhibit
The South Street Seaport Museum is inviting photographers to submit new works of New York City street photography for a juried exhibition to open in November of this year. According to the museum, the exhibition seeks to showcase the best of contemporary photography capturing life as it unfolds in New York City’s public places—its streets, parks and plazas. The exhibition will be curated by Sean Corcoran, curator of prints and photographs for the Museum of the City of New York and the South Street Seaport Museum.
Deadline for entries is 11:59 p.m., Oct. 22.
To learn more, visit southstreetseaportmuseum.org or call 212.748.8600.

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