Friday, September 12, 2008

Across 110th St.

"I was the third brother of five,
doing whatever I had to do to survive.
Now Im not saying what I did was alright,
trying to break out of the ghetto is a day-to-day fight."
--Bobby Womack, "Across 110th St."
Living across from Central Park for eight years, I saw a lot of things go down. On more than one occasion I found crack either just in the Park or in front of my lobby. Alot has changed since then, but the spectre of drugs lies still lies just below the surface. Much of the recent violence in the area is due to rival drug gangs. Such activity seems at odds with the new crop of million dollar lofts. This cognitive dissonance can be hard to get one's head around, but I vividly remember the day that this neighborhood forever tilted in the direction of gentrification. It was a rainy night early 2002 and I had to get up before sunrise to go to my shitty job. I noticed the chicken place on 111th and Lennox was taped off with yellow police tape, as I ducked into the 2,3 station. Later that day I read that two dealers where shot by undercover DTs when they pulled out on them during an undercover buy. One of the dealers died, and the wounded one was tried and convicted of attempted murder of a police officer. After that, this block chilled way out, and paved the way for this next and second wave of gentrification...culminating in 111 Central Park North.
Breaking all records for apartments sold above 96th St., 111 CPN stridently boasted on its barricades, "Condos starting at 1.5 Million." I heard more that one derisive comment regarding that phrase while waiting for the bus.
Still, it is a purty buidling...
a little to shiny for my taste. Im sure the views are killer.
Here's a spot that about to be developed next to the one remaining SRO on the block.
And the venerable Lincoln Correctional Facility!
I think this traffic circle is still 1 year from completion!
Now people only sell fresh produce in Morningside Park!
Avalon Bay...rents starting at $3000
The views are amazing!
My current buidling, The Dwyer, from Avalon Bay 14th floor.
Crazy amenities too...great life if you can afford it!

9 comments:

Cool Blue Reason said...

Yojimbot,

Great post and photos -- your perspective on the area is very much valued.

Keep it up!

Yojimbot said...

Thanks CBR, the responses have been great so far!

Also, Im going to do a Harlem Bird Tour in October. If you are interested, hit me up offline.

Regards

Christopher said...

LOVE your blog. Anxiously awaiting your post about Adam Clayton Powell....

Spicaro said...

Yojimbot

Hiya I am fellow Harlem denizen. I likes to blog. I be attending to Integrated Nerd Research at Queens College. I followed you over from Stuff White People Like.

I would like to catch a link on your blog and link to your photo blog.

Que piensas?

Spicaro

P.S. check me out http://spicaresque.blogspot.com

ken mac said...

That blue glass building looks like all the others going up across the city. Soulless, dead, empty. With wonderful views and amenities!

Yojimbot said...

Ken Mac: soulessness, death and emptiness ARE the amenitites!

Spicaro: creo que tu eres muy unico!

J

Harlem BuBu said...

Great pix! Keep it up! Maybe I need to put some pix on mine...

ken mac said...

what would bobby womack think of 110th today I wonder..

Yojimbot said...

Good question...im sure if he had the royalty checks from his music and could afford to live there, he would think its cool.

"You can find it all in the streets!"