Real Estate News from August 2012

  • Manhattan Real Estate and Reality TV By Gabrielle Hughes | August 16, 2012

    In the world of reality television, selling lavish homes to high-end clientele also appears to be selling well with viewers. Series like Bravo’s "Million Dollar Listing" and HGTV’s "Selling New York" bring in large audiences, as they exhibit never-before-seen properties owned by some of the world's most powerful people.

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  • The Changing Face of NYC’s Street Signs By Aby Thomas | August 16, 2012

    Just like New York City’s yellow cabs and its eponymous cheesecakes, the city’s street name signs are now synonymous with the city itself, with several tourists paying good money to buy replicas of these signs as souvenirs of their visits to the city. Despite modern contraptions like GPS and other navigation devices, many tourists, and even resident New Yorkers at times, have stood at the corners of streets, looking upward at these ubiquitous signs to tell them where they are, and also to point them in the right direction. However, with 250,000 street name signs in New York City, one could be forgiven for missing the subtle changes that have been occurring on those green (and sometimes blue, brown or black) signs all around the city.

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  • Floating Garden Takes Root in the East River By Yuan Feng | August 15, 2012

    Gardens in New York aren’t exactly uncommon sights and in fact, New York is actually known for a rising trend in rooftop gardens as well. On the other hand, a hydroponic garden that floats in the East River would probably catch quite a bit more attention. Over the last few weeks, Karim Ahmed has been collecting funds for his experimental garden design, recently reaching his required goal of $3,000. Due to ample funds received from a mass fundraising campaign throughout NYC, Ahmed expects his garden to be in an up and running state in just a few weeks.

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  • The Mystery of The Galleria's Rooftop Spaceship By Yuan Feng | August 15, 2012

    We’ve previously mentioned how NYC is constructing gardens on their roofs in a bizarre but ultimately beneficial movement for the city. But now, Manhattan has a rooftop structure that beats out even the strangest of urban rooftop gardens. At 117 East 57th Street exists a puzzling structure of glass and stacked houses that resembles a sort of greenhouse, though certainly the greenhouse of the future. Located 55 stories up off the ground, the structure is a series of connected glass houses and rooms that absolutely towers over Midtown East. And oddly enough, yes, this is actually an apartment.

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  • Marquees in Manhattan Stand Out More Than Ever By Aby Thomas | August 15, 2012

    A variety of architectural styles are resplendent in the buildings that line the streets of New York City. Be it the elegant brownstones of Brooklyn, or the stunning skyscrapers of Manhattan, a number of architectural designs are showcased in the construction of buildings around the city. However, while most of these structures are meant to dazzle and awe, there are certain designs that are not just eye-catching, but also provide a great service to New Yorkers. One example of this would be the water towers mounted on the roofs of buildings. While they make a perfect New York picture for tourists, they were originally built to protect the city’s municipal water pipes.

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  • Public Art Project Envelops Christopher Columbus By Yuan Feng | August 13, 2012

    We’re going to ask you to picture something bizarre. As is well known throughout Manhattan, a massive statue of Christopher Columbus stands proudly in Columbus Circle. Now imagine a massive tower built around the status, with stairs extending to Columbus’ head. And at the top of the stairs, picture a living room complete with a television capable of accommodating 50 people at a time. As you’ve likely figured out by now, such a project is actually on the way towards becoming reality. With funding from the city and design created by Japanese artist Tatzu Nishi, the 13-foot statue is on its way to welcoming 100,000 new visitors to its peak on September 20th, 2012.

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  • Families Rush into New York City By Cherefawn Chang | August 13, 2012

    For the first time in 100 years, big cities are growing at a faster rate than the suburbs. For all metro areas with more than one million people, cities as a whole grew 1.1% last year while suburbs only grew 0.9%. In New York City, much of this increase in population can be attributed to Rudy Giuliani. Since he took office in 1992, the New York Police Department has grown from 28,000 to 40,000 officers. Giuliani instituted a zero-tolerance method to crime fighting that gave officers more authority to approach suspicious people and make arrests. Soon after, the violent crime rate in Manhattan dropped 56 percent and robbery a remarkable 67 percent. Not only did the overall crime rates decrease by an incredulous amount, there has been a new demand for the city to go “green” with new planters, parks and pedestrian plazas. Manhattan as a whole has undoubtedly become a much safer and more family-friendly environment to live in.

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  • Unearthing the Secrets of Collect Pond By Yuan Feng | August 10, 2012

    Collect Pond Park, set to be unveiled in Late September, is going to offer a one-acre space complete with the benches, decorated pavement, and fountains that we’ve come to expect in Manhattan parks. But while construction continues aboveground to create this new public space in the Financial District, a rather different story lurks underneath the site. During construction, the New York City Parks Department located an odd series of subterranean walls beneath the park. Upon calling in an independent archaeologist, the mystery was revealed: the walls were part of The Tombs, a former city prison that has been undisturbed for over a hundred years.

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  • Redefining Nightlife Along East Houston Street By Gabrielle Hughes | August 10, 2012

    Bars are plentiful along the East Houston Street corridor, but the border between the East Village and the Lower East Side is ready to change up its local nighttime feel. While venues amidst Bowery and Avenue A are known for rowdy crowds and cheap drinks, the area is now looking to build some new destinations, and mirror more sophisticated hotspots in New York City.

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  • Rent or Buy? Majority of Americans Say: “Buy!” By Aby Thomas | August 09, 2012

    When it comes to looking for a home in New York City, people are often faced with the question of whether they would like to rent a gorgeous apartment, or just buy one that they can refine to their own tastes. For most people, this question would be answered on the status of their personal finances. For others, this has to do a lot with finding their dream apartment—for instance, the choice of rental apartments may simply not be as good as the luxury homes that are on the market for a price! Also, let’s not forget the emotional quotient associated with a home—the repeated angst of having to leave apartments in the course of a renter’s life can easily be avoided if one were to instead buy a home and live in it for years.

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