April 16th - April 20th, 2012
Expanded Drawing Center to Reopen in Manhattan
April 13 - The Drawing Center will reopen in September following a yearlong $9.6 million expansion in LowerManhattan, reported the Associated Press. Officials at the SoHo facility had once considered moving to a planned performing arts center at the World Trade Center site. The newly expanded center will provide 50 percent more exhibition and public space. The grand opening is on Sept. 13. The Drawing Center was founded in 1977. It's dedicated to all aspects of drawing, including sketches, architectural drawings, animated cartoons and tattoos. Architect Frank Gehry has developed a preliminary design for the performing arts center at ground zero. It calls for a 1,000-seat theater for dance, a secondary theater and rehearsal space. Construction has not started.
Tribeca Film Fest Offering More Than 150 Titles
April 15 - It may be ending with Iron Man, the Hulk, Capt. America and Thor wreaking havoc in The Avengers, but as a new decade begins for the Tribeca Film Festival, the founders of this New York City superevent remain committed to their initial intentions, reported the New York Daily News. Robert De Niro, Jane Rosenthal and Rosenthal's husband, Craig Hatkoff, began the festival -- which will begin its 11th edition Wednesday -- in 2002 as a way to help their Lower Manhattan neighborhood after Sept. 11. In the ensuing years, the program has evolved alongside a strikingly revitalized downtown community. TFF's lineup showcases an unusually broad range of options, perhaps more than any other film event in the world.
Changes Coming for CB1 Leadership
April 16 - Community Board 1, the primary forum through which Lower Manhattan residents have made government responsive to their will in recent years -- is facing the end of an era, according to the Battery Park City Broadsheet. After seven years as chair, Julie Menin is barred by term-limit rules from running for re-election. Members of CB1 who wish to be considered as the next chair will be submitting their names to the Nominating Committee in the weeks ahead, and the June monthly meeting of the full board will elect a successor. Two candidates are widely expected to run for the post: Catherine McVay-Hughes, CB1's current vice chair, who also serves as chair of the World Trade Center Redevelopment Committee, and Paul Hovitz, who is co-chair of the Youth & Education Committee.
Morgan Stanley to Expand at 1 New York Plaza
April 17 - Morgan Stanley, the sixth-largest U.S. bank by assets, signed a lease for almost 1.2 million square feet (111,480 square meters) of space at Brookfield Office Properties 1 New York Plaza in Lower Manhattan, according to Bloomberg News. The bank, which currently occupies about 816,000 square feet at the building, will expand by an additional 337,000 square feet under a deal that runs through 2029, Brookfield said in a statement. The agreement is the largest office lease for a single building in the city since 2008, according to the New York-based landlord.
Ironworker Falls and Hits Head at World Trade Center Site
April 17 - An ironworker at the World Trade Center site fell and cut his head early Tuesday morning. DNAinfo.com reported that the 27-year-old worker was standing on scaffolding and demolishing temporary steel supports that hold up the No. 1 subway line, which runs through the middle of the World Trade Center site, when he lost his balance about 2:55 a.m. Tuesday, Port Authority spokesman Steve Coleman said. Because the worker was wearing a safety harness, he only fell about 5 feet, but as he tumbled he struck his head against a hard object, Coleman said. He was about 30 feet below street level at the time. The worker was taken to Bellevue Hospital Center with a head laceration, officials said.
Landmarks Commission Praises Seaport Redevelopment Plan
April 18 - A bold plan totransform the South Street Seaport's Pier 17 with new high-end shops and a rooftop music venue earned praise from the city's Landmarks Preservation Commission Tuesday afternoon. While the commission did not take a vote at a hearing on the project, most of the commissioners gave the thumbs up to developer Howard Hughes' plan to gut the current Pier 17 mall and replace it with a modern all-glass structure topped by a green roof. But Tierney and the commissioners also expressed several concerns about the details of the proposal, including fears that retail signage would overwhelm the new building's graceful glass facade and block views of the Brooklyn Bridge. Howard Hughes and SHoP Architects will review the commissioner's comments and respond -- possibly with an updated design -- at another meeting soon, at which point the commission will vote on the project. Howard Hughes hopes to begin construction in 2013 and reopen the pier in 2015, pending additional public approvals.
Schumer Presses for Signature on GSA Lease at 1 WTC
April 19 - As the scandal at the General Services Administration over lavish spending by its managers grows, Sen. Charles Schumer pressed the agency not to forget its commitment to occupy space in the offices rising at the World Trade Center site, reported GSNmagazine.com. Schumer called Acting GSA Administrator, Daniel Tangherlini on April 18 to urge him to finalize the agency's lease agreement for federal office space at One World Trade Center, which is slated to open in 2013. The GSA is embroiled in a scandal over excessive spending at a Las Vegas convention by some of its western regional leadership. The current GSA mess shouldn't derail the timeline for the lease, said Schumer. The agency signed a term sheet for 300,000 square feet of office space in the 1 World Trade Center last August, but the final lease, now under GSA review, hasn't been signed.
The Technology of the 9/11 Memorial
April 19 - The new 9/11 Memorial is stunningly beautiful and extremely visitor-friendly, but the names of the 2,983 people who died in the September 11 attacks and the 1993 World Trade Center bombing aren't listed alphabetically, meaning that visitors may need help finding specific names, reported CNET.com. Yes, there's an app for that. Two, actually. The memorial, which opened on September 11, 2011, has already had more than 2 million visitors, and thousands more visit every day. As visitors quickly learn, one of the main things for them to do at the memorial is to look at the names of the nearly 3,000 victims. That's where a tool built for several different platforms comes into play. Known as the 9/11 Memorial Guide, it allows visitors -- or even those at a computer at home -- to search for someone's name, or for someone who worked for a specific company, was from a specific city, or who was a first responder. On the Web, users can search for a specific name, or can explore the memorial's list of names, panel by panel. They can also see names that have been requested to be adjacent to others, and can print out a victim's profile, which will list that their personal information, a short bio, and the exact location of their name at the memorial. But the biggest changes coming in the site's future is the opening of the museum -- visitors should expect to see a wide variety of digital content related to the attacks.