Nearly 150 years ago, something quite momentous happened in New York history: the first subway line was opened to the public. The system was the invention of Alfred Ely Beach and his company Beach Pneumatic Transit Company. Beach put up $350,000 of his own money to build the first prototype and tunnel and his company managed to put it together, somewhat covertly, in just 58 days. The tunnel measured about 312 feet long, eight feet in diameter, and was completed in 1870.
All posts by Diane Pham
Plants are an easy and inexpensive way to spruce up any room in a home, and this rings especially true in the bathroom where design choices typically don’t involve much more than the color of one’s bathmat. However, keeping greenery alive and flourishing in a room where temperatures can shift from cool and comfortable to hot and steamy in just minutes can be difficult. But don’t be deterred from growing a green canopy above your shower. Ahead, 6sqft rounds up 10 robust plants that enjoy high humidity, warm temperatures, and bright or low light.
Toxins from carpet, paint, upholstery, and cleaning products are just a handful of modern-day, airborne pollutants that can degrade indoor air quality, and studies have shown too much exposure to these manmade elements can cause lung and respiratory issues over the long run. Luckily, there are a number of houseplants that moonlight as efficient purifiers. Ahead you’ll find 15 of the best air-purifying plants suited for apartment living, according to Dr. B.C. Wolverton, a scientist who worked with NASA to develop a breathable environment for long-term lunar habitation.
Every year as the clock nears midnight on December 31, anticipation runs high as the world holds its breath waiting for the sparkling New Year’s Eve Ball to descend from its flagpole atop One Times Square. We all know that the countdown starts at 10, but there are a handful of other fun facts to muse over when it comes to the city’s most lauded tradition. From the wattage of the ball to the weight of trash produced to how long it takes to get it all cleaned up, see what we’ve rounded up, in numbers, ahead!
Summer is the perfect time to get out of town and explore what’s beyond the borders of the city. While there is certainly no shortage of nature escapes and historic hideouts nearby, just outside of Manhattan in about every direction are also numerous modernist treasures to admire. Ahead is 6sqft’s round-up of the 10 best destinations for architecture enthusiasts with a penchant for modern design.
6sqft’s series “My sqft” checks out the homes of New Yorkers across all the boroughs. Our latest interior adventure brings us to the Williamsburg apartment of designer Gregoire Abrial and marketing creative Hang Pham. Want to see your home featured here? Get in touch!
Raw, industrial loft spaces are increasingly difficult to come by these days in NYC, so when you walk into one that’s been custom outfitted by its tenants to a tee, the experience is truly unique.
Found inside none other than Williamsburg’s infamous artists bunker, 475 Kent, is the 865-square-foot loft of French furniture designer Gregoire Abrial and Vietnamese-born marketing creative Hang Pham. Ahead the international duo offer up a tour of their inimitable Brooklyn space (that upon move-in seven years ago had nothing more than a bathtub, toilet, and kitchen sink) which they’ve outfitted with “slow designs” by Gregoire (more on that ahead), items bartered with neighbors, refuse found on the street, tchotchkes and treasures from family, friends and travels, and, of course, a pretty amazing DIY treehouse bedroom.
This summer, the 9/11 Tribute Museum opened in a brand-new space at 92 Greenwich Street in the Financial District. The 36,000-square-foot gallery became the second iteration of the museum which originally occupied the former Liberty Deli from 2006 until earlier this year. While many are more likely to be familiar with the 9/11 Memorial Museum just a few blocks up the street, the Tribute Museum differs in that rather than focusing on the implications of the tragedy, documenting the events as they unfolded and examining its lasting impact, it assumes a more inspired take, dedicating its exhibits and installations to the stories of the survivors, first responders, relatives of victims, and others with close connections to the tragedy who found hope in the terror and stepped up to help their fellow New Yorkers.
Ahead, Lee Skolnick, principal of LHSA+DP and lead architect of the 9/11 Tribute Museum, speaks to 6sqft about the design and programming of this important institution, and how he hopes its message will inspire visitors to do good in their communities during these uncertain times.
6sqft’s series The Urban Lens invites photographers to share work exploring a theme or a place within New York City. In this installment, Ash Thayer shares intimate punk portraits of Lower East Side squatters from the 1990s. The photos are part of her collection “KILL CITY,” which was recently compiled into a book and published under the same name.
These days it’s difficult to think of the Lower East Side as much more than a destination for bar hopping, rapidly rising rents, and general raucousness, but not that long ago the neighborhood was a place pulsating with community, character, and openness to all walks: including squatters. One such squatter who found solace in this once distinct downtown enclave was photographer Ash Thayer who came to the city in the early ’90s to enroll at the School of Visual Arts, but after a series of misfortunes (e.g. a shady landlord who stole her security deposit) found herself homeless.
Thayer, however, had always had an affinity with the counterculture community and it didn’t take long for the kids of NYC’s punk scene to lend her a hand. In 1992, she joined the See Skwat, one of several squats she’d ultimately spend eight years living in and documenting. Ahead, Thayer shares some of her emotional photography from her time at See Skwat, and she speaks to 6sqft about her experience living in what she describes as an “important piece of the unknown history of New York.”
6sqft’s new series “Where I Work” takes us into the studios, offices, and off-beat workspaces of New Yorkers across the city. In this first installment, we’re hitting up MÔTÔ Spirits, a whiskey-distillery-cum-motorcycle-shop located in the heart of Bushwick.
Marrying whiskey and motorcycles seems like a lethal combination, but at MÔTÔ Spirits the pairing is a match made in heaven. Founded by Hagai Yardeny, Marie Estrada, and Tim Harney, MÔTÔ isn’t your average whiskey producer: On top of being the first and only distillery in the U.S. to produce rice-based whiskey and jabuka (an apple-based Croatian liquor), their deliciously potent potions are both inspired by motorcycles and concocted in the back of a motorcycle shop! In our exclusive video, Yardeny, Estrada, and Harney take us on a tour of their space and share how, and why, MÔTÔ Spirits has interlaced two unlikely businesses into one extraordinary endeavor.
Image via Citi Bike
Just a couple weeks ago, San Francisco-based bike-share Spin announced plans to bring 300 dockless bikes to NYC. However, the day before the operator was set to drop off its convoy, the Department of Transportation slapped the company with a cease and desist letter. Although Spin’s dockless entrance into NYC’s market has been thwarted, Citi Bike appears to be stepping up in its place. The Post reports that Citi Bike is now exploring how they can incorporate dockless vehicles into their system. As it stands, the blue bike network includes about 10,000 bicycles across Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn, all of which must be returned to designated stations following use.