The Grand Central Hotel in the late 1800s, via Wiki Commons
In the mid-1970s, New York City was falling apart. Its finances, infrastructure, and social cohesion were, figuratively speaking, crumbling. But in one very tragic case, they were literally crumbling, too. And it all came tumbling down on August 3, 1973, when what was once one of the world’s grandest hotels (which had more recently become known for mayhem of both a musical and criminal sort) collapsed onto Broadway at Bond Street in Greenwich Village. From serving as the scene of one of the time’s most notorious murders to a connection to the National Baseball League, the Grand Central Hotel certainly had a grand history.
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Photo via Wiki Commons
With 12 million visits a year from tourists and residents alike, Washington Square Park has plenty of things to see and do. And Parkies worth their salt know the basics: it was once a potter’s field where the indigent were buried, and a roadbed carried vehicles through the Park for almost 100 years. But the Park holds some secrets even the most knowledgeable Washington Square denizen might not know, like its connection to freed slaves in NYC and the fact that it was the first place the telegraph was publicly used.
Read on to discover if you’re a Park newbie or a Park expert
Photos © James and Karla Murray
Whether it’s their photography from our My Sqft series, images from their best-selling Storefront books or their most recent “Mom-and-Pops” life-size installation in Seward Park, chances are you’ve already admired the work of Karla and James Murray. And now there’s an opportunity to further appreciate their work and the work of those they have mentored. Earlier this year, James and Karla hosted two, two-session workshops, which taught the art of capturing New York City storefronts. Starting August 1, the workshop’s participants will show off their photos at the Jefferson Market Library’s Little Underground Gallery. Celebrate with them during a free opening reception for the exhibit next Friday, August 3 from 5 pm to 7 pm.
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Rendering by ODA Architecture
First renderings of ODA Architecture’s 13-story tower planned for Greenwich Village reveal a Tetris-inspired, boxy design, YIMBY reported on Wednesday. Much like the firm’s other projects, the facade of the building, located at 101 West 14th Street, will look like a series of sculpted, stacked boxes. Developer Gemini Rosemont has filed permits to convert the site which currently holds a former bank into condos with ground floor retail. There will be 45 condos total, with 21 of them duplexes.
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Photo by Tia Richards for 6sqft
New York’s first public monument to the LGBTQ community opened Sunday in the Greenwich Village, a historically significant neighborhood for the gay rights movement. Located in Hudson River Park and designed by local artist Anthony Goicolea, the monument honors the victims of the 2016 Pulse nightclub shooting, as well as all victims of hate and violence.
“This memorial saddens us, when we think about the Orlando 49 senseless deaths, but it also enlightens us, and it also inspires us,” Cuomo said on Sunday. “It inspires New Yorkers to do what New Yorkers have always done – what Anthony was referring to: to push forward, to keep going forward on that journey until we reach the destination that the Statue of Liberty promised in the first place.”
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Rendering by Anthony Goicolea via Gov. Cuomo’s office
A monument to the LGBTQ community is taking shape in Hudson River Park along the Greenwich Village waterfront. Last year, Gov. Andrew Cuomo chose Brooklyn-based artist Anthony Goicolea to design the monument, aimed at honoring both the LGBT rights movement and the victims of the 2016 Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting. Although the Hudson River Park Trust told 6sqft an opening date of the installation isn’t known yet, Urban Omnibus reported the monument is expected to be completed this month, coinciding with Pride Month.
Did you participate in the Stonewall Inn Riots of 1969 and the period of LGBTQ activism in New York City between 1968 and 1971? Do you know someone who did? If so, consider contributing pride memorabilia from that moment in history to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center, which is compiling a collection to preserve the history of Stonewall. The project, Stonewall Forever, launched last year after Google granted the LGBT Center $1 million to preserve oral histories and experiences of those present during the riots.
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6sqft’s series “Where I Work” takes us into the studios, offices, and off-beat workspaces of New Yorkers across the city. In this installment, we’re touring the oldest pharmacy in the United States, C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries in Greenwich Village, and talking with owner Ian Ginsberg. Want to see your business featured here? Get in touch!
C.O. Bigelow Apothecaries was established in 1838. It is the oldest apothecary in America. It was originally called the Village Apothecary Shop and was opened by the Vermont physician, Galen Hunter. It was renamed C.O. Bigelow Apothecary when it was purchased by an employee, Clarence Otis Bigelow in 1880. The apothecary is in fact so old that it once sold leeches and opium as remedies. According to legend, the chemists at Bigelow even created a salve for Thomas Edison to treat his burned fingers when he was first developing the light bulb.
In 1922, the apothecary was sold to the pharmacist, Mr. Bluestone, employed by Bigelow, thereby continuing the unique legacy of passing ownership from employer to employee. Bluestone sold the pharmacy to yet another pharmacist employee, William B. Ginsberg in 1939. And since 1939, three generations of Ginsberg’s have owned and operated the shop, passing down from father to son to most recently grandson, Ian Ginsberg, who 6sqft spoke with at this historic pharmacy in Greenwich Village at 414 Sixth Avenue.
It was only four years ago that Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards and his wife, model Patti Hansen, bought the penthouse at celeb-filled 1 Fifth Avenue for $10.5 million. Two years later, after an overhaul by architect Joe Serrins, the rock legend listed the Greenwich Village spread for $12.23 million. But as it goes, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” and in October 2017 he dropped the price to $12 million even and brought it celebrity stager Cheryl Eisen. The price continued to decline, dropping to $11 million this past November, and most recently $9.95 million. Now, the Observer reports that it’s gone into contract, meaning he more than likely took a loss.
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Jessica Lange is movin’ on up. According to city property records first spotted by The Real Deal, the Academy-award winning actress bought the two-bedroom co-op directly above her current home in 1 Fifth Avenue. Lange paid $3.3 million, more than $500,000 under the asking price, for the sun-filled unit, which is much in need of updating. But this won’t be a problem if the speculation that she’s looking to combine the two apartments is true.