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Volume 75, Number 50
May 3 - 9, 2006

Editorial/ Op-Ed
Misuse and abuse of zoning, variances has got to end now
Two contentious Downtown building projects highlight why the city must continue to be vigilant about the misuse and abuse of zoning and variances.

Talking Point
Where to buy drugs — and no it’s not at a gay disco
By Tim Gay
O.K., O.K., some people might remember that I was a “clean up the discos” crusader back in the ’90s. But I’ve changed my perspective since those days when shooting bullets on the dance floor seemed to be a part of many clubs’ allure.

Finding a new perspective at Westbeth kids’ dance
By Michele Herman
Some of my far West Village neighbors and I came through a rough time last fall. It had to do with the fight to save the old brick Superior Ink building on West and Bethune Sts. When that failed, we endured the doomed and discordant effort to limit the impact of its high-rise glass replacement and, when that failed, the equally messy effort to spread the pain equitably.

Letters to the editor

Scoopy's Notebook

Editorial Cartoon
By Ira Blutreich

Police blotter


News In Brief

A mountain of upgrades coming at Vesuvio Playground

Critical Mass riders get geared up for film fest

Student memorial

Taking it to the street

Crusties gang up on homeless patriot


Youngest Little League players have it down to a T
By Judith Stiles
The competition to get into preschool and then the “right” kindergarten is fierce in New York City. So it is no wonder that parents of 6-year-olds in Greenwich Village Little League have crafted a totally noncompetitive T-ball division where outs are not outs, and never a peep is heard from the adults about the score.

Love shack, Hudson Park runners say

"Serving West and East Village, Chelsea, SoHo, NoHo, Little Italy, Chinatown and the Lower East Side"

Villager photo by Q. Sakamaki

Part of America’s fabric
Illegal immigrants by the thousands and their supporters rallied for immigrants’ rights on Monday at Union Square. Among the American flags were also ones from Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Haiti, Brazil, Pakistan and even Puerto Rico. The photographer took this artistic photo through an American flag by shooting close to the flag while being aided by bright sunlight.

Villager Exclusive

Cipriani says arrivederci to Pier 57 Leonardo plan
By Lincoln Anderson
The $250 million Leonardo 57 development project for Pier 57 in the Hudson River Park has hit a major stumbling block, as Cipriani has pulled out of a partnership with the Witkoff Group under which Cipriani would have operated a spacious upscale catering and banquet hall on the pier.

Landmarks sets hearing date for old P.S. 64
By Lincoln Anderson
Local politicians and community activists came together on the City Hall steps on Monday to celebrate the Landmarks Preservation Commission’s setting a date of May 16 for a public hearing on the old Public School 64 building.

Approval is given for Village Historic District’s expansion
By Albert Amateau
Champagne corks popped in the anteroom of the Landmarks Preservation Commission chambers on May 2 when Village preservation advocates celebrated the expansion of the Greenwich Village Historic District and the creation of a nearby Weehawken St. Historic District near the Village waterfront.

Tower may no longer be seminary's salvation"
By Albert Amateau
General Theological Seminary is heeding the outcry by Chelsea neighbors against its proposal for a 17-story mixed-use building to replace the deteriorating four-story Sherrill Hall on the Ninth Ave. side of the campus.

Attorney general contender says to give peace candidate a chance
By Paul Schindler
In a candidates forum Monday evening at Judson Memorial Church sponsored by the Downtown Independent Democrats and the Village Independent Democrats, which saw five of the party’s six candidates for attorney general turn out, the most remarkable comment came from one of three long-shot primary challengers to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton (who did not attend or send a surrogate.)

Undulating glass and all, Greenwich Ave. building is given green light
By Albert Amateau
The Landmarks Preservation Commission unanimously voted on May 2 to approve the undulating glass residential building designed by William Pedersen for The Hines Development Co. for a parking lot site across from Jackson Square Park.

Grannies not guilty of blocking recruiting station
By Jefferson Siegel
After a six-day trial, a State Supreme Court Judge last Thursday ruled that 18 members of Grandmothers Against the War were not guilty of blocking the entrance to the Times Square Armed Forces recruiting station.

Great Saunter will be stepping off Saturday for a 32-mile walk
By Albert Amateau
The Great Saunter — sometimes known as The Long Schlep — will begin Saturday morning May 6 when more than 300 intrepid walkers are expected to take part in the 22nd annual 32-mile walk around Manhattan Island sponsored by Shorewalkers, Inc., a hiking and environmental group.

St. Columba’s discovers they’re on list to close
By Albert Amateau
Parents, students and teachers of St. Columba’s parochial school in Chelsea felt a devastating aftershock on April 21 when the Catholic Archdiocese changed its realignment plan and announced that their school on W. 25th St. would close this month

Third suit is filed against Wash. Sq. renovation
By Albert Amateau
Four Villagers who live around Washington Square Park filed a lawsuit on May 1 to stop the proposed renovation of the park scheduled to begin in July.

Glick joins Silver in bar brawl with governor on S.L.A. reform
By Lincoln Anderson
The State Legislature last week overrode Governor Pataki’s veto of two budget items to implement a problem bars task force and pay for nine new State Liquor Authority inspectors.

Margarita Lopez lands #3 job at the City Housing Authority
Making good on expectations that she would get a job in Mayor Bloomberg’s second administration, former City Councilmember Margarita Lopez last week was appointed to the board of the New York City Housing Authority. With the appointment, she is the third-most-powerful person at NYCHA after Chairperson Tino Hernandez and Vice Chairperson Earl Andrews Jr.

After stop-work order lifts, focus shifts to 5th St.
By Lincoln Anderson
The Department of Buildings last Thursday lifted a stop-work order at 120 St. Mark’s Pl., allowing interior demolition at the former Cave artists’ squat to proceed. A stop-work order had been issued on April 17, after workers for a developer with an option to buy the building.

Theater sites’ second act: Pricey apartments on Sullivan, 3rd Ave.
By Lincoln Anderson
A new five-story residential building is rising on the site of the Sullivan St. building formerly home to “The Fantastiks,” the longest-running Off-Broadway play in history. Developed by Jeff Gershon and designed by ADG Architects, the new building at 181 Sullivan St. will feature five full-floor condominium residences, including one garden duplex.

Chef’s love of food started early in northern Italy
By Karen Kramer
Some say that geography is everything — that where you are born determines what will influence you for the rest of your life.

Arts & Entertainment

For Harold Clurman, theater’s man of passion
My, how the man could talk.
He could also write.
Here is how, in a thrilling, seminal 1945 book called “The Fervent Years,” Harold Clurman, who in the summer of 1931 had talked the Group Theater into existence, described the opening night of January 5, 1935, at the old Civic Repertory Theatre on 14th Street, of a play by a struggling young actor/writer (well, they were all struggling) named Clifford Odets:

Broadway, here they come
By Rachel Breitman
Before the pint-sized cast of “Sideways Stories from Wayside School” sets foot on stage, the audience is greeted by the familiar rhymes of Schoolhouse Rock, a 1970’s educational television ad campaign.

Wallace Shawn, prince of New York
By Wickham Boyle
Wallace Shawn — Wally to many, and Wal to his longtime love, extraordinary writer Deborah Eisenberg — is the face, voice and mind behind a myriad of ventures.

Suicidal Tendencies

The millennium has come and gone with no apocalypse, and nary a horseman in sight. Still, beneath the blissful glow of globalization, a culture rife with suicide, school shootings, and hatred festers — to say nothing of the young warriors and insurgents initiated since 9/11. Violence wins. Death rules.

Koch On Film
By Ed Koch
“Somersault” (+) This Australian film is worth seeing. The story is unusual and the actors, all previously unknown to me, are first rate.
“Sophie Scholl: The Final Days” This is a true story about three members of an anti-Nazi underground cell, part of the White Rose group, that functioned in Germany during World War II.


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