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Tuesday, August 19, 2008
When Will Stuy Town Have Peace & Quiet Again?
New residents of Stuyvesant Town may be surprised to learn that there was a time when even on the weekdays you could wake up to the sound of birds chirping outside your window instead of jackhammers hammering and drills drilling. There was no 7AM wake-up call from Tishman Speyer, and life here was tranquil, an oasis in Manhattan that was true luxury living.
It would stand to reason that eventually all the construction we are seeing, and living through, will come to an end--but is that so? And if there is an end to it all, when will it occur?
Right now, the 20th Street Loop is being repaved, both the roadway and the sidewalks. Work is still not finished, though it looks as if just one week more may be needed to complete the project, if that. The noise, filth and disruption that tenants in that area have had to endure for many weeks will now be the experience of another loop in the Stuy Town complex. So the suffering continues. At least there's a limited amount of loops to play with.
The four Oval amenities that are being crafted out of four corner buildings in the Oval are still not finished. Sometime in the middle of September they should be done, which will be a great relief to the tenants that live around those spots. Still, trouble may be brewing when these Oval amenities (called now "Oval Essentials") open up and produce, perhaps, nighttime crowds that will give little peace to the tenants nearby.
The dumpsters. There are two large dumpsters near the borders of Stuyvesant Town that are emptied in the middle of the night (like past 1AM) and make life a living hell for the tenants in those areas. No relief is in sight, despite the promises of Tishman Speyer to move the dumpsters to a garage facility where, hopefully, the noise will be considerably less intrusive to tenants.
Somehow, however, one has hope. But one should not hope too much. It is very possible, if not probable, that Tishman Speyer has another construction/disruption project in the works, if not several of them. (And if a few can double up as MCI increases--why the hell not, according to TS.) As has been mentioned on the Stuy Town Tenants Association message board, a good possibility exists that meters for gas and electricity will be installed in each apartment for the obvious purpose of relieving Tishman Speyer of paying the gas and electric bills of their tenants. (Free gas and electric has been an honored tradition in Stuy Town and Peter Cooper since the complexes were built, but Tishman Speyer has been eradicating tradition with a vengeance.) Rumors abound that a gate will be built around Stuyvesant Town--another project with a 7AM wake-up call. Perhaps new sidewalk lamps and illumination will have to be installed, because, after all, the overkill of newly planted trees and plants has created too many shadows and dark nooks and crannies where none existed before. And the central Oval area has been ignored for the entire summer and is crying out for rehabilitation, which, beware, may include a white picket fence around it.
So, you see, there can always be something that still needs to be done, some new project thought of by a man sitting in a nice suit in a nice high-rise office that justifies his nice salary.
The irony is that all of this may be a moot point down the line. If, as some predict, Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper are eventually going to be demolished to make way for 60-70 floor towers, all our sufferings and all the work and all the man power will have been in vain. But don't bet for one moment that whatever MCI increases paid for such work will be retracted.