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bear by san

March 2017



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bear by san

Hey, anybody out there good at Midtown West?

I need an apartment building somewhere in this general vicinity (saw, on West 60th, not too far from the park) that could date back to the early 70's.

What do we think of that brown complex on the corner of Columbus Ave? What is that thing?

NB: Looking at pictures of Manhattan in Google Earth is tweaked. Because the sat images are taken from different angles, the buildings look stirred.


My husband's aunt used to live in the apartment complex that's on the corner of West 60th and Columbus, the one with two buildings facing each other across a grass courtyard. Is that the one you mean? It dates from the 60's, I think. Most of the buildings there are older than that, with a couple of newer (c. 1990) and taller buildings mixed in.

Across Columbus Avenue, that's Fordham University. A bit farther toward the top, Lincoln Center.

The building to the right of the apartments, toward Columbus Circle, used to be a big exhibition building. They were planning to tear it down but I don't know whether they ever did -- we haven't had reason to go back since she died.

That funky tall white building that's kind of by itself on 8th just off Columbus Circle is the Paramount Building. There's a large theater complex in the basement. It's from the 60's but it's offices, not apartments. The brown building across the street looks like it might be a 60's building but I don't remember what it is.

Those are *exactly* the apartments I need. I thought they were old enough! You get a special Hero of the Revolution no-prize!

I don't suppose you've been inside one? What's the floor plan like in a standard unit?

I do indeed :)

West 60th is one way from Columbus Circle toward Fordham. You can't see it in this picture, but there's a circular drive off 60th to the front door. Just before that, a parking garage. Planters beside the drive always had nice but plain flowers -- geraniums in summer, tulips in spring, that sort of thing. Same in the courtyard.

There's a security desk just inside the double glass doors; they had the same doorman for as long as Neil's aunt lived there. A tall courtly black gentleman with an almost photographic memory for faces. We visited once or twice a year, but he knew us, which tenant we visited, what car we had, what grade the boys were in, etc. The lobby is black and white marble, with mirrored walls. The mail room is to the right as you enter. The elevators are just past that. If you go straight from the doorman's desk, you're in that courtyard, which is walled in and very private and peaceful.

Typical apartment: small kitchen to the left, straight ahead into a good sized living room (Neil's aunt had a baby grand piano and a dining table with room left over), radiators under the window. Door about halfway along the left-hand wall into a small hallway with the bathroom to the left and the bedroom (small) to the right. Windows overlooking the courtyard.
*sends cookies and flowers*

Thank you.
Glad to be of service. If you need more details, just ask.
On reflection, I think that was probably black and white Terrazzo, not real marble.
Another memory: It was always very quiet and smelled vaguely of Lysol wafting from the rooms. The residents were mostly like Neil's aunt, older singles who moved in when the building was new to be near the equally new Lincoln Center and the life of midtown Manhattan. It was cheap there, and with rent control making it even more advantageous, nobody moved out. So they all grew old together.

The building was always well maintained, with new carpets and hallway wallpaper every few years. The colors changed, too. Rather nice actually.
*adds a ribbon to the hero pin*

How long ago was this?
She died ten years ago, so we would have been visiting from 1980-1995, approximately.

She must have moved in about 1965-1968.
Thank you.
Donald Trump actually bought and redid the Paramount Building, so it's now a hotel/high priced residences.
Why does that not surprise me?

Did they ever do anything with that exhibition building?
Can't answer your question, but just a reminder that Searching for Shakespeare opens at the Yale Center for British Art later this week.
During the week (when I can't attend, *sob*) they're having lectures by James Shapiro (author of 1599, which really impressed me) and the chief curator of the exhibit, Dr. Tarnya Cooper (who was quoted in articles about the Grafton not being Shakespeare -- and never answered my emails about whether they did similar comparisons between that and Corpus Christi). I've got the lecture schedule blogged, in my journal as well as bard_in_boston if you want the shortcut.

I'm planning on going in August with some friends from out of town. It's not doable currently on my schedule.

Thanks for the heads-up, though.
Okay. I've got a book (from the exhibit) to return to you...
Yes. Thanks!
Thank you!
Check out MIGHTYMAP.com -- you can access their fabulous program at the Science Industry Business Library (one of the 5 NYPL research libraries) at Madison and 34th st.

This program gives you every bit of real estate info you could want on very specific pieces of property. Manhattan was their first program.

Or phone them at 1-718-703-2700, to find out the nearest location to you where you can access this fantastic program.

[not a paid endorsement, merely experience from working at SIBL last fall, and attending one of MightyMap's workshops.]

Love, C.