One of the holiday windows at Saks, via Google Maps
We’re starting to think Google wants us to never leave our apartments again. Not only can we tour the elite Gramercy Park without a key and explore NYC in 3D, but now we can even check out the department store holiday window displays with Google Maps, welcome news for those of us who want to get in the holiday spirit without battling the crowds.
The Observer reports that the feature is available in London and New York, the latter showcasing those windows at Saks Fifth Avenue, Macy’s, and Bloomingdale’s. It’s part of Google Maps’ new Business View feature, which makes it possible to virtually go inside businesses and provides special offerings like a 360-degree tour of the Colbert Report set.
Take a look at this year’s holiday windows
For those of you who remember the quirky Times story featuring a Google team’s attempt to document every inch of Ellis Island, here comes the the payoff. The awe-inspiring world of Google Maps and Google Earth is growing into an even grander time suck with a slew of new city sites rendered in 3-D. Their latest update now lets us explore New York’s landmarks from top to torch to spire, and all the details in between, right from our desktops. Some of the most impressive sites worth a gander include the Statue of Liberty and One World Trade Center.
For the vast majority of New Yorkers, the closest look they’ve gotten into Gramercy Park is peering through the perimeter wrought iron gates. As one of the most elite and inaccessible outdoor spaces in the city, only those who live in dwellings circling the park have keyed access via an annual fee. That is, until now. Thanks to a rule-breaking Airbnb-er, the world can now revel in the verdant splendor that is Gramercy Park.
Find out how this guy got all the snaps
Coasters are definitely high on the list of “gifts for people who you don’t know what to give,” and if you’re like us, you’re always searching for sets that aren’t the standard square cloths or round pieces of wood. So, we’ve found the perfect coasters–not only are they unique and visually appealing, but they have a personal touch.
Neighborwoods Map Coasters were created by San Francisco graphic designer Aymie Spitzer, who has a passion for hand-lettered vernacular and antique maps. The cedar wood coasters celebrate the special neighborhoods of some of the country’s biggest urban sites, including Manhattan and Brooklyn.
More on Neighborwoods Coasters here
Still recovering from a Thanksgiving travel fiasco? Or maybe you haven’t even made it home yet. Either way, this map is probably not going to make you feel better. It’s a visualization of taxi trips from NYC-area airports between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.
The project was inspired by a previous mapping endeavor, NYC Taxis: A Day in the Life, and was created by designers at ImageWork Technologies. They looked at taxi trips originating from JFK and LaGuardia in 2013, and even have a feature that allows users to filter the results by individual airline terminals.
More details ahead
New York City is home to some of the world’s most spectacular parks, and though we may pride ourselves on these well-tended green spaces, more than a handful of neighborhoods don’t see more than a single tree for every 60-foot stretch of concrete. Enter 596 Acres, a grassroots land access nonprofit looking to change all of this with the Urban Reviewer. Developed with the help of a team of volunteer researchers, urban planners and designers, this new online tool allows anyone to view the staggering amount of publicly-owned lots that once had an urban renewal plan in the pipeline but were scrapped due to bureaucracy. By mapping out all of the vacant spaces across the city, 596 hopes that we as a community can take a top-down approach to turning these urban blights into public gardens, play lots, and spaces where people can “co-create.”
Find out more here
You might have noticed that hipster eyeglass emporium Warby Parker took over the former Lascoff Drugs store on Lexington Avenue and East 82nd Street. The community is quite satisfied with their thoughtful reuse of the historic pharmacy, and in return, the company seems to be very in tune with the neighborhood of their latest outpost.
Warby’s latest foray into the world of the Upper East Side is a map of famous literary locations, from the Barbizon Hotel, fictionalized as the Amazon in Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, to Eloise’s home at the Plaza Hotel.
More on the map here
A new mapping tool called Urban Layers lets users see almost every building still standing in Manhattan today and reveals exactly when it was built. The data goes back as far as 1765. The interactive map by Morphocode provides insight not only into the history of a specific building, but into the evolution of entire neighborhoods, too. And for New York City history fanatics like us, this user-friendly tool is definitely going to come in handy.
More on the mapping tool here
My, the difference a few years makes. Never was that more apparent than with Google Maps Street View’s new function that allows you to take a peek back in time and see how much your neighborhood has gentrifi–err–transformed since 2007.
The photos culled by the WSJ ahead focus in on the unprecedented changes Williamsburg has undergone over the last six years. The alterations are particularly apparent at Bedford Avenue and North 7th Street, where some cosmetic improvements have been made to the building facades. However, the transformation is rather mind-blowing when you see the difference new developments by the waterfront have made to the neighborhood’s aesthetic.
Take a look at Williamsburg’s astonishing transformation here
, Fri, September 19, 2014
Every few years the New York City Department of City Planning releases a new map to document changes in demographics, geographic profiles and neighborhood boundaries. The maps have been produced since 1994, and following its 2010 update, the City has just released a 2014 version. In addition to offering some insight into the current socio-economic makeup of our city, this brand new release is also topographically correct, drawn up to reflect everything from hills to rivers and reservoirs. Some new notable neighborhood additions include Allerton, Kingsbridge Heights, Erasmus and Fox Hills; while Fresh Kills Landfill and Downtown Flushing have been rechristened “Freshkills Park” and simply “Flushing”, respectively.
You can explore the new map digitally here or see a PDF version here.
[Via CO via WSJ]