I think now of the many times I have enjoyed walking along Battery Park, never realizing this was where my grandfather -- "Father John," as he came to be known -- first set foot on this continent. He was 27 years old.
Nationally, in the wake of urban growth and renewal, there is considerable debate about whether public parks and open space should be given away or sold to for-profit enterprises. Are they valuable civic resources or just places to put stuff?
With its historic pedigree of cobbled streets and low-rise tenements, the northerly fringe of Front Street is cozy, romantic, even down-home. And in just the past few years it's sprouted an impressive row of eateries and watering holes.
Normally I'd think this would be an easy trip -- I'm a former NYC resident, with dozens of visits since under my belt. Dirty subway rides, rude cabbies -- I've done it all. I'm a veteran. But this time is going to be a bit different.
The Parks Department has proposed new rules that would lead to a 75-80% reduction in art vendors in Union Square Park, Central Park, and Battery Park. More than 100 people are expected to lose their jobs.