Archive for the ‘Upper East Side’ category

Hell Gate in NYC

December 7, 2007

Hell Gate is actually a river junction just off the Upper East Side of Manhattan.  There’s a great view of it from Gracie Mansion.  Or, I think there is but the fence is high on that side of Gracie and I can’t see if they have a sightline.  Well, they’re elevated so they probably have no problem looking over their own fence.

It’s technically between an island on the East River and Queens, but I’ll claim it for Manhattan.  I’ve thought of it where the Harlem River and the East River join.  You can definitely see some tumult in the river at that point and it is a really nice view.


There’s a wonderful pathway along the river at that point.  Lots of trees and joggers.


Below is a southward view.


I have to admit that supplying benches is something that NYC does very well.

Below you can glimpse some of the swirling water that typify the area.



Ankling to Gracie Mansion

December 1, 2007

Gracie Mansion isn’t named after Gracie Allen (wife of George Burns), but for some strange reason I can never quite separate the two.  As a name, “Grace” is pretty common nowadays; but not “Gracie”.  Oh well, just one of my quirks.  (Actually, “Gracie was the last name of the architect, but that isn’t as fun to thing about as Gracie Allen.)

Gracie Mansion is the official residence of the Mayor of New York and has been for quite some time.  It’s located in Carl Shultz Park on the east side of Manhattan, just about at 88th Street or so.

To call it impressive, at least from the outside, is to overstate it.  The mansion is located about 20 feet from a major street, East End Avenue, and is between it and the East River.  The area itself is really nice.  The building is…yellow and pretty big.

The next picture is just in from East End.


It’s located amidst a bunch of trees and some impressive fencing.

One of the guardhouses is right there, keeping an eye on traffic.


The next picture is about the clearest view you can get of the place, unless you can get in.  The mansion appears to be two largish houses with some sort of connector.


In the next pictures you can see that there are two parts to the place.



As you can tell, it isn’t easy to see much of the place.  I don’t know if it is for security or for privacy or just an original feature to the place.  You can walk all the way around the place, but you really can’t see all that much except from the south.

Here’s a picture from the east, though.


Here’s what you see from the north side.


On the west side, you see little or nothing.  However, for some absurd reason I love the next picture that shows the fence within a fence.  You can see at least three different fences at different points of the perimeter.  In this, it shows what looks like an old fence that’s great for privacy and an iron fence for security.  I think the privacy fence is pretty old which would indicate it isn’t to address recent security concerns.


If you paid close attention to the beginning you may have noted I referred to the place as the “official residence”.  Well, it isn’t the actual residence.  With other mayors it has been.  The location’s good and the place is large and that is always in short supply in Manhattan.  In fact, I think Gracie Mansion is one of the only freestanding one-family houses on the island.  I’m sure I’m wrong, but I can’t remember seeing any others.

But, for Michael Bloomberg such things as Gracie Mansion are a step down from his current place.  He’s a multi-billionaire and has no need for public housing.  I’ve heard it is in use for formal occasions but I think it would be more cool to see his real place than Gracie Mansion.