For years I used to love taking the number seven train through Long Island City just to see the amazing 5 Pointz building and its amazing graffiti. Some called it “The United Nations of Graffiti” because of the international artists who created the art there. Other people dubbed it “the world’s only graffiti museum.” The owner, Jerry Wolkoff, had given the artists’ permission to use the building as a canvas for “aerosol art” and the building was covered in multicolored murals and tags, making it a tourist mecca as artists and fans of graffiti art from around the world traveled to see the former industrial building in Long Island City that artists had decorated for two decades. Continue reading
Many local Greenpoint hosts who make ends meet by renting out their places using Airbnb are in for a rude awakening. On Friday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law a bill to make it illegal to advertise entire unoccupied apartments for less than 30 days on Airbnb, according to multiple reports. New York housing law restricts short-term rentals for certain housing, and housing advocates in the city argue that many of the units listed on Airbnb are illegal. Although these hosts can already face steep fines, the new law would make it illegal for Airbnb to allow listings for these units on their platform. Continue reading
Too often cultural institutions (see CBGBs) are wiped off the map because of one thing: GREED. Those big ugly towers that are coming to Greenpoint – there is one reason why they are 40 stories high: more apartments equals money. There is not enough concern over the effects new developments have on communities, especially when a lot of money is to be made.
Over the Newtown Creek another battle wages against the Manhattanization of the outer boroughs – the HUGE international effort to Save 5 Pointz, an underground art institution, which makes the ride on the 7 train to Manhattan so visually appealing and so not Manhattan. Continue reading