Saturday, January 26, 2008

The magical vanishing of Pacific Street blight

It seemed intractable, didn't it, the blight bordering the Metropolitan Transportation Authority's Vanderbilt Yard. As the Empire State Development Corporation declared in its Atlantic Yards Blight Study:
In contrast, as illustrated by Photographs H and I, the blocks south of Atlantic Avenue host a combination of vacant, underutilized, and physically deteriorating structures and vacant lots, and are lined with cracked and crumbling sidewalks that are overgrown with weeds and strewn with trash...
(Emphasis added)

The ESDC punted on what agency was responsible for upkeep. But in the past couple of days, a clean-up has begun on the blocks. (Who's responsible? I'm not sure--I queried the ESDC and haven't yet heard back. I know it wasn't the same crew that blitzed Pacific Street one Sunday last September.)

Similar views

Photographer Tracy Collins yesterday captured the clean-up on Pacific between 5th & 6th avenues (first photo; similar perspective to Photograph C) and between 6th and Carlton avenues (second photo; it's across from the Newswalk condos and has been better taken care of then the blocks to the east and west).

Photograph H at top captures the scene one block further east, between Carlton and Vanderbilt avenues. (Update 5 pm: Today Collins shot Pacific between Carlton and Vanderbilt, as shown at bottom; there's less obvious "blight removal" because of construction on the street.)

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