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Saturday, June 21, 2008

From the East Bank

From Long Island City
Photo by myself, looking onto Manhattan from Long Island City.

It's tough to say what's nicer, the views from Manhattan or the views of Manhattan. Many of the new condo buildings in Long Island City and Queens, just across the East River, are advertised for their cinematic views of the Manhattan skyline.

This photo is deceptive. The gorgeous modern United Nations, designed by Le Corbusier, looks to be next to the Chrysler Building, several blocks away. The Pepsi-Cola billboard actually lies along the edge of Long Island City, with the East River in between.

You can see the area better in an earlier photo of mine.


Tonight Mark and I went to a rooftop party in Long Island City, also known as LIC.

We went to one of the new apartment towers, which had a beautiful roof deck. There were landscaped areas, freestanding barbeques and wood structures enclosing picnic tables.

Five or six separate barbecues were going on at the same time, without a problem. Each sheltered area was separated from neighboring areas by tall grasses. Someone brought an ipod and a couple speakers. We had a wine bucket and food from a nearby supermarket. The grill, maintained by the building, was ready to go. All we had to do was flip the burgers and enjoy.

There was also a petanque court, a swimming pool and dozens of lounge chairs. I can understand why LIC is advertising itself as the next Battery Park City, the cluster of modern buildings at the southern tip of Manhattan. The similarities are obvious - both are at the waterfront, both are littered with modern high rises and parks, and both have all the amenities people are willing to pay big money for.

The nicest thing about the rooftop was that it's environmentally friendly. A rooftop garden cools the roof, which is normally heated by sun during the day. Rain that normally runs off the roof is used for planting, and the plants themselves are great for the inhabitants and the environment.

Hopefully we'll see more urban amenities like this. I think everyone would love to have a garden and barbeque.

Lower photo by myself in Long Island City.

Related Posts: Building For a Greener Environment and Climbing the Times


Spandrel Studios said...

The whole rooftop garden concept is such a great idea - seems like a no-brainer, but I guess there's some maintenance involved that you have to factor in.

What a neat concept to have separate outside "rooms" where many tenants can entertain at once! Amazing what a little outside-the-box thinking can do, eh?

Although if I lived there, the Safety Girl in me would be constantly worrying if everyone doused their barbeque properly each night!

Kitty said...

Hi Spandrel
I wonder why people didn't do this kind of thing earlier. It's such a nice amenity.

The bbq's were well away from the building fortunately. The builders were prepared for everything!

Reluctant Blogger said...

roof top gardens do sound like a good idea - nice and airy. I would just have to stay away from the edge as I have a severe phobia about heights!!

fishwithoutbicycle said...

Sounds like an idyllic way to spend the day and what a great sounding building. It's a shame the prices in LIC rival Manhattan.

roentarre said...

Interesting abstract. City photojournalism is so full of possiblities

Kitty said...

lol, I can relate. For some reason I resisted the temptation to look down. Looking across the river was fine.

Hi Fish
So true. It's ritzy over there. A Whole Foods has opened up. I have no idea how much the apartments are, surely very expensive.

Hi James

Olivier said...

j'aime beaucoup cette vue sur le chrysler.
I love this view on the chrysler.

ken mac said...

That is a great photo. The older, the older, and the new. Pepsi Lives!