Monday, December 31, 2012


This photo was taken about a week before Hurricane Sandy hit on Oct 29. One57, the building under construction, achieved notoriety when the crane at the top of the building snapped during the storm and was left hanging to the side. Surrounding streets and buildings were evacuated until the crane could be secured a week later. Taken from nearby Central Park, Manhattan.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Union Square East at Night

The last couple of times I photographed the "Zeckendorf Towers" apartment buildings one or more of the lighted pyramids at the top were dark. This time they were all lit although the 4th tower is hidden from this angle. The condo was renamed One Union Square East and the address was changed to One Irving Place but I still call it Zeckendorf Towers. The building that's partially visible at the left with the blue lighting at the top is Two Irving Place and is the home of NYC's power company, Consolidated Edison (Con Ed).

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

MetLife Clock Tower - Night

The clock tower at the Metropolitan Life Insurance building near Madison Square Park. It's one of my favorite buildings to look at and even more more so at night.

Monday, December 17, 2012

'Tis the Season

Holiday street scene on Broadway near Union Square

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Empire State Building

The Empire State Building lit in red, white and green last night for the Robin Hood Foundation 12/12/12 Concert for Hurricane Sandy Relief

The ESB recently installed a sweet new LED light system that can display over 16 million combinations of colors and effects instead of the 20 or so colors that it was able to display in the past. For sure the new lighting seems to be much brighter. Just prior to snapping this photo the red and white lights at the top were "spinning" around the spire.

Friday, December 7, 2012

FiDi Skyline

The Downtown Manhattan / Financial District skyline seen from the Lower East Side.Some buildings of note... left to right in the background: The green-topped building is (I'm almost sure) 40 Wall Street, AKA The Trump Building. The rectangular slab building to its right is One Chase Manhattan Plaza followed by the Verizon building (large whie building), New York by Gehry (aka 8 Spruce Street) with Four World Trade Center right behind it, still under construction. The building towards the right with the green roof is the Woolworth Building and, of course, the tallest building is One World Trade Center, still awaiting the arrival/installation of it's spire to top it off.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Hand Chair

Saw this outside a store in the Flatiron/Gramercy area. I'm not sure what it is but it looks like a chair and I like it!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Williamsburg Bridge / Williamsburg Brooklyn

The Williamsburg Bridge, looking towards Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The bridge is one of my favorite subjects although not my favorite bridge. It's just down the block from here so it's a convenient subject and it's always there when I can't find anything else to take pics of

Friday, November 30, 2012

Gloomy Day

A gloomy day in NYC with rain, fog, mist and light snow. Most of the downtown skyline is hidden in the fog

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Lower East Side Rooftops

Roof tops of the Hillman Co-op, Lower East Side, Manhattan.These buildings were originally built around the late 1940s by the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America as part of a larger urban renewal / slum clearance program. It's one of the 4 housing cooperatives along the eastern end of Grand Street, collectively known as Cooperative Village (Co-op Village).

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


In the foreground is just one of the empty lots (now used for parking) in the Seward Park Urban Renewal Area (SPURA) on the Lower East Side. SPURA was cleared of its tenements, and residents relocated, in the early-mid 1960s as part of an urban renewal project and has been stalled ever since as different neighborhood groups debated over what should be built, how much housing v. commercial, how much "affordable" v. market rate housing, etc. Today it remains the largest plot of undeveloped land in Manhattan south of 96th Street. But a plan was recently agreed to which will build a mix of commercial and residential (about 40/60) with about 1,000 apartments (50% of which will be "affordable" - this view will change dramatically within the next few years.

Beyond this SPURA lot is Delancey Street, a busy shopping street which also carries a high volume of traffic to/from the Williamsburg Bridge (just out of view to the right). Beyond Delancey Street are two of the newer buildings built over the past few years - The Hotel on Rivington (THOR) towards the center and the Blue condo at the right.

Monday, November 26, 2012

FDNY - 42nd Street

FDNY response at 42nd Street near the Grand Hyatt Hotel / Grand Central Station. I don't know what, if anything, was burning and didn't smell smoke. But there was a lot of water being cleaned up inside Grand Central Station's Lexington Passage, presumably from the fire hoses.

Meanwhile, I solved the mystery of what I thought was a vision/medication interaction that I even consulted with my eye doctor about. While my vision has deteriorated slightly since last year, I'm relieved to know that it was a stupid resolution error! Since late August/early September I've been uploading photos here that are smaller than I'm displaying them. I couldn't understand why sometimes I would look at the same photo and it looked sharp and other times it appeared slightly blurred. I never made the connection that all of the blurred occurences were here on this blog while the sharper ones were elsewhere. I really thought my vision was going bad. Ha! I've gone back and re-uploaded all of the photos with higher res versions

Thursday, November 15, 2012

1WTC Day and Night

One World Trade Center by day and by night - seen from the Lower East Side.The two construction cranes at the top were pointing towards each other (don't recall ever seeing them that way) seeimg to form a house stick-figure. Both shots taken yesterday, Nov 14.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

FDR Drive After Sandy

This is my one and only photo of Hurricane Sandy and it's being posted two weeks after the fact. Sandy knocked out power to our entire neighborhood (in fact, to almost all of Manhattan south of 36th Street - an area now nicknamed SoPo for "South of Power"). For those of us living in highrise apartments this resulted not only in lack of power and all of the obvious things that go along with that (no phone or cell service, or power to even recharge cell phones) - but also lack of running water and flushing toilets. After 3 nights in the dark I found shelter at a hotel in Queens. After showering and then finding a warm meal, I returned to the hotel and turned on the the TV and saw, for the first time, the devastation all around the NYC area. That was when I realized how lucky I was to have made it through the storm with what, in the grand scheme of things, was just a minor inconvenience (however severe it seemed to me at the time). It took almost a week for the power to come back at home... and another 24 hours for heat and hot water to return. But when I returned home on Sunday, my apartment building and apartment were intact and I was able to get my daily routine back to normal - even though my head is still not quite back to normal. There are tens of thousands of people in surrounding communities who are not so lucky - who's lives have been turned upside down and whose homes have been completely destroyed. Yesterday I had an appointment in the financial district (FiDi) and I walked past some skyscrapers that I had worked in at various times in the past. These are huge fortresses of concrete and steel - yet they were no match for the force of mother nature and they will remain uninhabitable for months (one for up to a year). Sandy has shaken my sense of safety and security more than 9/11 did and it took took quite a while for me to feel "right" after 9/11.

This photo was taken the morning after Sandy hit bringing record flooding along the East River. The FDR Drive and adjacent streets and parks had been completely under water the night before. Most of the water receded back into the river by morning.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Lower East Side - Midtown View

Looking north from Corlears Hook over Lower East Side NYCHA apartments (foreground) towards midtown Manhattan

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Sky - Clouds

A beautiful October sky over Stuyvesant Cove and the East River

Monday, October 22, 2012

Manhattan Bridge

Similar to a shot that I took a few years ago - this one in portrait orientation to capture more of the river below.This is taken from the Manhattan side of the Manhattan Bridge looking towards Brooklyn

Friday, October 19, 2012

Looking Up

I was sitting in a park at Liberty and William Streets waiting for an appointment and looked up to see Chase Manhattan Plaza (right) and the new Liberty Plaza apartment tower (left) soaring high into the sky.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Grand Central Station - Panorama

Trying out the new panorama feature on the iPhone 5 - taken from the Apple Store at Grand Central Station, looking towards the Vanderbilt Avenue side. The iPhone selected ISO 3200 so there's a considerable amount of noise (I already cleaned some of it with Nik Define). While I'm not too happy with the overall image quality of this particular photo (noise & sharpness) I am impressed with how well the panorama mode works stitching the images together. Given the lighting conditions the iPhone selected f/2.4, 1/120sec, ISO 3200.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

New and Old New York

Another "peeking" building photo - this one from The Highline. The.building in the foreground with the sloping facade is the Associated Press headquarters at W. 33rd Street. The modern building peeking thru at the the center is (I think) the Bank America tower in midtown.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Philadelphia Electric Company

The Philadelphia Electric Company Building taken from a New Jersey Transit train crossing the Delair Bridge on the Atlantic City line. This railroad bridge spans the Delaware River linking Philadelphia, PA with New Jersey. The building looks very interesting but I don't know if it's still being used. This was shot 4:3 and cropped to 16:9 to cut away reflections from overhead lights inside the train.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Chrysler - Murray Hill Roofscape

The Chrysler building beyond the Rooftops in Murray Hill/Midtown East, Manhattan

Friday, September 28, 2012

SteelStacks - Bethlehem, PA

An abandoned steel plant at Bethlehem, PA - awesome to see in person. This site is being redeveloped into an entertainment/cultural center with the steel plant as a backdrop. There's a Sand's Hotel/Casino on the site as well. This image is HDR comprised of 3 different exposures.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

East Bway - WTC - Evening

I was walking around the neighborhood one evening and grabbed this snap. The Canon G1X does very well in low light although I may be seeing some camera shake here (it's hard for me to be sure these days - I never know if it's really in the photo or if it's my vision. I have a visit scheduled with the eye doctor next month). Anyway, this was taken at 1/25sec, f/5.8 at ISO 6400. I think the G1X is excellent for a compact camera and it's my new take-everywhere cam.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Ed Koch - Queensboro Bridge

The Queensboro Bridge spans the East River connecting Manhattan and Queens, passing over Roosevelt Island. The bridge was recently renamed Ed Koch-Queensboro bridge (after former NYC mayor Ed Koch) and is also known as the 59th Street Bridge. Back in the 1960s Simon & Garfunkel's The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin' Groovy) brought some fame to the bridge. The Tram that runs alongside travels between Manhattan and Roosevelt Island.The tall green building seen under the bridge in the distance (lower right) is the Citicorp building in Long Island City, Queens.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Low Tide - East River

At low tide there's a narrow sandy "beach" that appears under the Manhattan end of the Brooklyn Bridge. The horizontal shadow across the foreground is the Brooklyn Bridge above. While the public is not allowed access to this area I've often seen people climb the 3-ft barrier to dip their feet in the East River. At any time other than low tide this spot is completely under a few feet of water.

The bridge in the foreground is the Manhattan Bridge (looking at the Manhattan tower). Way off in the the distance (left) is the Brooklyn tower of the Williamsburg Bridge.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Watchtower - Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Heights and the Jehovah's Witness Watchtower Building - seen from the South Street Seaport area in Manhattan earlier this year.This is tonemapped HDR.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Rear Windows - Chrysler Peek

I love walking around the city and finding interesting peeks at landmark buildings between other buildings. This is the top of the Chrysler Building seen between two buildings in Kips Bay, Manhattan.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Trump - Chrysler - UN Plaza

Midtown Manhattan skyline - including Trump World Tower (tall building at left), Chrysler Building and 100 United Nations Plaza. Seen from Roosevelt Island, NYC

Friday, September 14, 2012

Rooftop Graffiti

Rooftops decorated with graffiti in the Two Bridges area of the Lower East Side - seen from the Manhattan Bridge.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

World Financial Center Reflections

The glass facades at World Financial center (across from the World Trade Center site) create some interesting reflections and angles. World Financial Center, Manhattan.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

East Broadway - FiDi Skyline

HDR photo from February of this year - looking out over a block of Lower East Side tenements towards the skyscrapers in the Financial District. Many of these old buildings are slowly disappearing as the LES gentrifies and owners replace tenements with new, taller buildings. This view will likely be different in a few years. One of the larger (double-width) tenements on this block was torn down two years ago to make room for a hi-rise building but apparently the funds ran out and all that remains is an empty lot - for now.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Smeller Modus

Rooftop graffiti on a Lower East Side building - from April. Lower East Side, Manhattan.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Chrysler-MetLife-Tudor City

Manhattan's east-midtown skyline seen from the East River and featuring the Chrysler Building (center), MetLife building to its right (formerly the Pan Am Building) and Tudor City apartments in the foreground

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Skyline Wake

Sailing up the East River leaving the downtown Manhattan bridges and skyline in our wake. We call the East River a river but it's not really a river. It's a salt-water tidal strait that connects New York Bay with the Long Island Sound. Both the bay and sound open to the Atlantic Ocean.

The waters of the Atlantic Ocean, New York Bay, East River, and Long Island Sound completely surround the large body of land that Brooklyn, Queens, and "Long Island" sit on. So, technically, Brooklyn & Queens are on the same island as "Long Island."  With Staten Island and Manhattan also being islands, this leaves The Bronx as the only part of NYC which is attached to the U.S. mainland.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Under the El

This was taken underneath the elevated subway tracks in Brighton Beach, Brooklyn (just west of Coney Island) back in May. The shadows and rust on the underside of the structure caught my attention as I was crossing the street.

Friday, August 31, 2012

More from the High Line

A few more shots from my walk along the High Line elevated park in NYC's Meatpacking and Chelsea neighborhoods

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The High Line Park, New York City

A doctor's appointment-gone-wrong left me with about a hour to kill yesterday between appointments. I decided to take a walk on the High Line, a relatively new park that is a creative transformation of an abandoned elevated rail line into a beautiful open space.

Short history - the High Line was originally built in the 1930s as part of Robert Moses' West Side Improvement Plan, which eliminated dangerous at-grade railroad crossings along Manhattan's west side (which was mostly industrial) by raising the rail tracks into the air, like elevated subway lines. By the 1980s the line was abandoned and eventually became an eyesore overgrown with weeds.

These photos show just some scenes of the park itself - the creative use of the space to create seating areas, lawns, plants, trees and pedestrian paths. You'll note that there are some rails embedded into the pedestrian paths. I'm assuming these are original to the structure. For more information, including historical photos, visit The official website of the High Line and Friends of the High Line. For more information about Robert Moses, I recommend The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York, by Robert Caro. It's over 1,300 pages, but it's a fascinating read

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

The Tombs

This is NYC's Criminal Courts Building, known as The Tombs, taken back in February of this year -  3 different exposures combined using using HDR tonemapping software. On the border of Chinatown-Civic Center, Manhattan.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

New & Old NYC - MePa

Mix of old and new in the Meat Packing district (MePa). The 4-story building at the right was built probably in the late 1800s or early 1900s. The nearby Standard Hotel was built about two years ago and straddles the High Line - an abandoned elevated rail line that's been converted to an elevated park that runs for about 20 blocks on Manhattan's west side.

Monday, August 27, 2012

New & Old New York - Orchard Street Rooftops

New addition to the tenements on Orchard Street includes a roof deck/observation tower. Lower East Side, Manhattan

Friday, August 24, 2012

Colgate Clock

This clock is all that remains of the old Colgate-Palmolive headquarters (the toothpaste people)  which stood on the Jersey City waterfront across the Hudson River from downtown Manhattan. The clock lived on top of the building and faced the river and Manhattan. Colgate moved its headquarters elsewhere in the mid-1980s and Goldman Sachs built a large office tower in its place in the early 2000s. The clock was preserved and reinstalled at ground level just south of the Goldman Sachs Tower. This is at Exchange Place, Jersey City, New Jersey

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

New and Old NYC - 6th Ave Downtown View

Not the usual juxtaposition of new and old that I enjoy finding. These are more distant contrasts. The "old" here is the clock tower in the foreground - the Jefferson Market branch of the NY Public Library on Avenue of the Americas (6th Ave) in Greenwich Village. When built in the late 1880s it served as the Third Judicial District Courthouse. This building is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. The "new" is in the far distance. The tallest of those new buildings is 1 World Trade Center (still under construction). The shorter building to its left is 7 World Trade Center (the only new building on the WTC site that is already completed and occupied). The building to the right of 1WTC is Trump Soho Hotel at Spring Street. Although it appears to be near the WTC site, it is actually about half-way between the World Trade Center site and the clock tower.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

River Traffic - Fulton Ferry

Fulton Ferry got its name from the ferry service between Brookyn & Manhattan started by Robrert Fulton in the early 1800s, long before the Brooklyn Bridge was built. At the time it was the only way to cross the river. By the early 1920s the Brooklyn Bridge had made ferry service obsolete and it was discontinued. But Fulton Ferry lived on as the name of this waterfront Brooklyn neighborhood. Today, ferry service is once again operating between Fulton Ferry and various other neighborhoods in Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Clock Tower

The clock tower at the old Met Life building near Madison Square Park, taken around sundown back in February.