By Carol Tannenhauser
Monday, July 4, 2022
Generally clear, High 87 degrees
Our calendar has lots of local events! Click on the link or the lady in the upper righthand corner.
“The greatest city in the world is set for the greatest Fourth of July celebration in the country,” according to the Daily News. Unfortunately, the East River is hosting the Macy’s barges (historically, the rivers alternated each year), so Upper West Siders will have to leave the neighborhood for the best in-person views — or stay home and watch it all on TV. Either way, The New York Times has it covered.
The City’s free summer meals program for New Yorkers 18 and under has started and is available at these locations on or near the Upper West Side, operating Monday-Friday, Breakfast 8-9:15 am, and Lunch 11 am- 1:15 pm:
- PS 149 (41 W 117 St.)
- Wadleigh (215 W 114 St.)
- Locke School (20 W 112 St.)
- PS 75 (735 WEA)
- UA Green Careers HS (145 W 84 St.)
- PS 191 (300 W 61 St.)
Thanks to Council Member Gale Brewer for the information.
On Wednesday, July 6, at 3:30 pm, Amsterdam Nursing Home (1060 Amsterdam Avenue, between 113-114 Streets) will be having a big celebration for 14 residents who are 100-plus years old. Yes, 14 centenarians in one place! There will be certificates going out from various UWS dignitaries, live music entertainment, food, and, of course, birthday cakes. The event is open to the public.
A story in The New York Times by Penelope Green recounts the more-than-century-long history of the Belnord, the Renaissance-style building, covering a full city block from West 86th Street , Amsterdam to Broadway, now the setting of the hit TV series, “Only Murders in the Building,” created by Steve Martin and John Hoffman. Hoffman says he drew inspiration from the Belnord. “I knew we could make something as elevated as that amazing building. It is a cliché to say that the building itself is a character, but I like the challenge of getting beyond that cliché a bit. What pulls us out of our apartments to meet people? How well do you know your neighbors? Do you only connect when it’s necessary? The ways in which we get pulled together when we live in these spaces is what’s really interesting.”
It’s also interesting that, when the Belnord had slipped into deep disrepair, the person who saved it was the controversial builder of supertalls, Gary Barnett, then 38 years old, who bought it in 1994 for $15 million. “A decade later, Mr. Barnett and his company, Extell Development, would build One57, the funnel-shaped, blue-glass skyscraper on West 57th that was the city’s first supertall tower and, in so doing, incur the ire of preservationists, urban planners and civic groups. But in those years, he was a hero. The Belnord was his first Manhattan property, and he would spend $100 million shoring it up.”
On the topic of buildings, The Real Deal informs us that Chabad Lubavitch, which “has been praying for a resolution to its plight on the Upper West Side” is now “putting its faith in the judicial system.” The religious organization is suing the developer Sackman Enterprises. The issue is that Chabad bought a condominium under construction at 15-19 West 96th Street, between Central Park West and Columbus Avenue, from Sackman more than five years ago to use for “religious, education and community” purposes, but it is still far from finished. “The developer only recently topped out the building, meaning the uppermost beam was put in place,” a lawsuit filed by Chabad Lubavitch reported.” They want their down payment back — and then some.
The Zabar family is being sued by Friedland Properties for being “commercially unreasonable,” because they won’t discuss redeveloping a property the two groups own jointly, across the street from Zabar’s store on Broadway and West 80th Street, The Real Deal reported. “The Zabars and Friedland both own a 50 percent stake in the multifamily building. Friedland ‘s ready to redevelop the property, but claims in the suit Zabar’s vice president Stanley Zabar ‘steadfastly refused to engage in meaningful discussions.’”