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Jared the NYC Tour Guide Blog

Posted: Mar 13, 2013 | 8:37 PM
by Jared Goldstein

Commercial and Residential Rents High; Wealth and Poverty Rates Extreme

According to Wall Street Journal, commercial rents on 5th Ave between Rock Center and Central Park South are $3000 per square foot (per .1 meter square) per month, the highest in the USA (world?).


According to the NYTimes, Times Square Commercial Real Estate is renting for $2000 per sq foot / month.


On the residential end, NYC is 8th among per square foot costs of luxury apartments at $2000.  


New York is home to the world’s largest population — 7,500 — of people with more than $30 million in assets. Of the 432 billionaires in the United States, 102 are New Yorkers.


About 100,000 New Yorkers are homeless, or near homeless (spent a night in the shelters in the past year), 40,000 of whom are children.  This is 7% of the US homeless population.  NYC is about 3% of the US population.



The NYC poverty rate is 21%, or 1.7 million New Yorkers.  Poverty is a national figure, so for a single person that is $11,000 a year, and for a family of four, that is $24,000.  NYC is one of America's most expensive cities, so the poverty rate is actually higher.

The median NYC income is $50,000.

The median apartment cost is around $750,000.

The average Manhattan rent is $3,500 per month.  The over-all vacancy rate is less than 2%.  The affordable housing vacancy rate is much less.

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Posted: Mar 13, 2013 | 12:26 AM

March 13th in NYC History

1852:  "Uncle Sam" made his illustrated debut.  The cartoon was by Frank Bellew, and it appeared in the New York Lantern.

This political cartoon portrays Britain, as John Bull, assisting its shipping industry, while the US, personified by Uncle Sam, stands by watching.  The New York Lantern shines a light on the situation.

1885:  Joseph Pulitzer's promise to print the names of the contributors in The World got the Statue of Liberty's pedestal fully financed.

Pulitzer, a Hungarian immigrant and publisher of the world's most-read newspaper, which championed social justice, was a hero to poor immigrants, inspired immigrants to pay for the base of the statue, despite their poverty.    

We hear this story and others on Statue of Liberty tours, New York Harbor tours, and Staten Island Ferry tours.

1888:  New Yorkers walk across the East River at the end of the Great Blizzard.

1913:  William J. Casey, President Reagan's CIA Director 1981-1987 and campaign director in 1980, born in Queens.  

He was involved with the Iran-Contra Scandals and has been implicated in the October Surprise scandal of 1980 which encouraged Iran to keep American Ambassadors hostage until after the election and the Carter term.

1939:  Chart-topping songwriter, tens of millions sold over decades, and performer, Neil Sedaka, born in Brooklyn.

1964:  Kitty Genovese, 28, was stabbed to death in Queens while screaming bloody murder.  Her death symbolized urban apathy and out-of-control urban violence and fear with tinges of racism.  The New York Times incorrectly portrayed that over three dozen people witnessed the attack, but 'did not want to get involved.'

Decades later, it came to symbolize urban alienation and powerlessness, especially on my tours. 

In my Community Gardens tours, Harlem tours, and Greenwich Village tours, all where we encounter Community Gardens, we learn how community gardening strengthens neighborhoods and increases safety by having diverse neighbors know each other, know who is there possibly to harm, and increase networks and bravery to take stands.  The turnaround of New York City took hundreds of thousands of regular people decades to accomplish.

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Posted: Mar 12, 2013 | 12:56 AM

March 12th in NYC History

1858:  Adolph S. Ochs, who built The New York Times into one of the world's top newspapers, was born. He died 1935.

1912:  The Girl Guides, the forerunner of the Girl Scouts of America, was founded in Georgia.  In 1957 the Girl Scouts of America moved its headquarters to New York City.

1922:  Beat writer Jack Kerouac born.  He died in 1969.

“the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.” 
-- Jack Kerouac, On the Road

1928:  Edward Albee, Playwright "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" born.

1962:  Darryl Strawberry, a star of the Mets (1983-1990) and the Yankees (1995-1999), born.

1987:  "Les Miserables" opened on Broadway.

2002:  The U.N. Security Council approved the first U.S.-sponsored resolution endorsing a Palestinian state.

2009:  Ponzi-scheming financier Bernard Madoff pled guilty in New York.  Many think his swindle was the greatest, but the mortgage boom swindles have not been prosecuted, since they are too big to fail and to jail.

2011:  The Arab League asked the U.N. Security Council to impose a no-fly zone to protect Libyan rebels, which worked out well for them.

no ny1

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Posted: Mar 11, 2013 | 12:46 AM
by Jared Goldstein

March 11th in New York City History

The Great Blizzard 1888 dumped over twenty inches of snow in three days.

It is the reason that NYC put its myriad webs of wires under the streets, which usually works out, but didn't in the wake of 2012's Super Storm Sandy.

2002:  The Tribute in Light, twin beams commemorating the World Trade Center and its community, premiered.  They are a project of the Municipal Art Society and Creative Time.  

Due to its impact on the environment, they are lit around the eve of 9/11 for a few nights annually.  
You can support it.

1961:  The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announce the development of the World Trade Center and its record breaking Twin Towers.  Eminent domain and demolition took five years and then ground was broken.

1957:  The Quiz Show Scandal:  Columbia professor Charles Van Doren's fourteen week streak on NBC's "21" concluded. Subsequently he admitted in Congressional testimony that the show was fixed.  

This was the basis of the 1994 film "Quiz Show."  And you think so-called Reality Shows are real?!

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Posted: Mar 10, 2013 | 1:19 AM

March 10th in NYC History

1648:  Mayor/Governor/Director-General/CEO of Nieuw Amsterdam (New Amsterdam) Peter Stuyvesant issued a law prohibiting goats and hogs from roaming the streets.

1867:  The mother of Social Work, the Visiting Nurse Service, Nurses in schools, and so much more, Lillian Wald, born.

We see her Henry Street Settlement house

 on one of my Lower East Side tours or my Jewish Lower East Side.

1903:  Clare Boothe Luce,

playwright, anti-communist and anti-FDR politician, and America's first woman Ambassador (Italy and Brazil) born in NYC
. She was also married to the founder of Time, Life, and Sports Illustrated magazines, Henry Luce.  I bet she worked for the CIA just for that reason, and she founded the Atomic Energy Commission and that she was on Reagan's Intelligence Advisory Board.  She died 1987

1940:  Tony Award winning playwright David Rabe born elsewhere.

1959:  The Tennessee Williams' "Sweet Bird of Youth," starring Paul Newman and Geraldine Page, debuted on Broadway.

1965:  Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple" debuted on Broadway

1971:  Actor Jon Hamm (Mad Men) born.

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Posted: Mar 8, 2013 | 9:17 PM
by Jared Goldstein

March 9th in NYC History:  <BR>

Happy Birthday, Barbie! <P>

Battle of the Ironclad Ships!

1862:  The pride of Greenpoint in Brooklyn,...

the ironclad USS Monitor battled the ironclad CSS Virginia (the refurbished USS Merrimac) to a draw.

1902:  Architect of some great New York buildings, such as Radio City Music Hall and the Museum of Modern Art, Edward Durrell Stone, born elsewhere.

1910:  Samuel Barber, composer, born.  He died in 1981.

1943:  ABC News alum Charlie Gibson born.

1954:  CBS' Edward R. Murrow criticized Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy's anti-Communism campaign on the news show "See It Now."

1959:  Mattel's Barbie doll debuted at the American International Toy Fair in Madison Square's Toy District.

Two observations about the timing:

This is the day after International Women's Day.

Barbie is a Pisces.  She can't decide whether or not to marry Ken.  On the one hand, he is literally made for her... On the other hand, if she marries him, she can't date like she used to...

My fiancee' lives near Madison Square.  I'm a Pisces who waited a long time to decide.

1971:  Harlem's Duke Ellington inducted into the Songwriter's Hall of Fame in New York.  He was one of its first composers.

:  Three days after Walter Cronkite signed off (see March 6), Dan Rather debuted as "The CBS Evening News" anchorman.

1996:  Oh, God!  George Burns, the funny entertainer from the Lower East Side, died at 100.

1997:  Brooklyn's Notorious B.I.G. Biggie Smalls shot in L.A.

2005:  Dan Rather retired as CBS News anchorman.

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Posted: Mar 8, 2013 | 12:36 PM
by Jared Goldstein

Happy Women's Day   March 8th

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Posted: Mar 8, 2013 | 12:21 PM
by Jared Goldstein

March 8th in NYC History

1971:  "The Fight of the Century:"  Undefeated Heavyweight Champion Joe Frazier defeated undefeated Muhammad Ali by decision at Madison Square Garden.  It was Ali's return to boxing after being jailed as a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War.  

Ali viciously taunted Frazier, making it personal.  They were to meet each other two more times, which Ali would win.

[Frazier unanimously beats Ali at MSG in the Fight of the Century .  It was Frazier's 27th straight win, and Ali's first defeat after 31 in the pros.  This was Ali's return to boxing after three years off due to his resistance to the Vietnam War.  It was also after Ali taunting Frazier with name calling and insults.  Ali won the second match by a decision, and the third was conceded by Frazier's trainer due to injury.]

My brush with fame: My parents publicized Joe Frazier, and MSG was my father's home turf.  My mother designed Frazier's flowered satin robe and shorts.  He was man enough to wear a clover pattern.

I'll provide pictures next year.

1999:  New York Yankees slugger Baseball Hall of Famer Joltin Joe DiMaggio died at 84.  He helped bring the Yankees nine championships.

There is a picture of him and my Dad at the Carnegie Deli that I will try to find for you.

March 8th was an up and down day for my Dad who was close to Frazier and who loved the Yankees.

2013:  Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, Osama bin Laden's son-in-law and ally, appeared in Federal Court for prosecution.

Until Guantanamo, most terrorists have been convicted in NYC's Federal Courts.  

We see these courts on Downtown tours, Municipal District tours, and other tours.

If you would like to comment on this, please click on Facebook "Like" to the lower left and discuss there.

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Posted: Mar 6, 2013 | 6:29 PM
by Jared Goldstein

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