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LOOK UP!

14 Mar

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It’s easy to get distracted by all the new signage on East Fourth, but next time you find yourself down here, I recommend looking up! There are so many architectural details that make this small block unique.

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The building that now hosts The Dredgers Union was originally a Five & Dime called McCrory’s. This is the original signage that can be seen above the second story windows.

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The Frederick Building above Erie Island Coffee has the neatest contrast of blue window frames with large white subway tile siding.

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This building is technically on Prospect, but I have always admired the sleek black tile in contrast with the exposed brick texture.

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One of my favorite details on the street are the remnants of painted advertisements on the sides of buildings.

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Next time you find yourself in Dredgers Union, be sure the check out our book “East Fourth Street: The Rise, Decline, and Rebirth of an Urban Cleveland Street”, written by Alan F. Dutka ($19.95). It’ll provide you with an in-depth look at some of the beautiful buildings I’ve posted here, as well as many other interesting facts about the awesomeness that is East 4th!

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speaking of walking in a park: NYC’s THE HIGH LINE

8 Mar

This is the High Line during it’s years of use.  (To mostly passengers between 1934 – 1960’s).  And Below are some images of what the High Line turned into after it’s last use (carrying a few frozen chickens in 1980).  Not to say it was not beautiful in it’s own romantic sort of way, but certainly not safe or functional.  (these images by Joel Sternfeld by way of The High Line.org website.)

In 1999 two guys who lived in the neighborhood of the High Line, started Friends of the High Line and their efforts to save the tracks and have them re-purposed as a pedestrian park were underway.  It didn’t happen over night but in 2006 the project was underway, led by world class firm JAMES CORNER FIELD OPERATIONS. 

Check out this video that much better explains this amazing project below:

ATTN: CLEVELANDERS:  Take note as FIELD OPERATIONS is the same firm that was commissioned to re-imagine our own PUBLIC SQUARE!  We too can have a world class park! Check out the PROJECTS section of their website then click on Cleveland’s Public Square.  Now look at the images below of the High Line today and take note of the billions of dollars worth of development that has been spurred on around this park as a direct result of this project.   We too could see the same kind of positive impacts, from a functional, beautiful, world class make over of our city’s center.

Below are images taken from the High Line.org’s website:

Below is a pic of the DU buying assistant, Jen Allanson and the RS buying assistant, Jennie Doran while on a recent trip to NYC and (of course) the High Line.

Anyhow, I just love the High Line and want so badly to be able to walk to Public Square on my lunch break and have the same sort of experience.  And I can’t help but think of all the amazing potential projects, businesses, buildings etc that would pop up around it.

xoxoxo

danielle

NYC part 2: play

24 Feb

Each time I come to NYC I get a little bit better at knowing my way around.  Yet each time, I think to myself, ‘this is the best brain exercise!” because it is not quite instinctive and I have to always take a beat and think about where I am and where I am headed.  Wes and I were meeting up after work one day and he was walking to meet me in Chelsea and we realized we were walking towards each other on the same street just a few blocks away and he said to me “I’ll be on the North side of the street” and I was like…”um, without Lake Erie I don’t know where North is!”.

I am there about 6-8 times a year between work and seeing my bff who resides there.  But it was THIS trip that I felt that things really started to ‘click’ for my sense of direction.  I have to admit, the GREATEST GRID exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York, which my mom and I visited over this past weekend, really helped my understanding of how to navigate this city.

Turns out that while downtown seems to have been exempted to some degree from the grid plan of 1811, Manhattan is made up (mostly) of a series of North South Avenues (1-12) and East West Streets (1-155) (with a few distinctive and notable streets that are the exception to this -Madison, Lexington, Broadway also i suppose the addition of the alphabet streets of the lower east side).

Anyhow, this is notable because it makes it very easy to understand where you are in relation to where you are going and you can start to gauge the distance, which will determine if foot, train or cab would be the best form of transportation.  For awhile now, my understanding of the geographic relationship between neighborhoods has significantly improved my confidence in getting around, but I should have started with learning what the grid was here.  In fact, it is similar to Cleveland’s own grid in a few ways as we have numbered roadways running North South (4th st., 6th st., 9th st., etc) and east west streets cutting across them (st.Clair, Superior, Euclid, Prospect etc.).

I’m still going to have to calibrate my brain upon my next arrival to the big apple, but each time, it gets a whole lot easier, and a lot more fun subsequently.

Above is an image of the survey done of each of the avenues.  The exhibit is really cool because it shows how until the elevation of each road had been leveled out ( a HUGE issue and undertaking ). On one side of the street there would be rocky ledges right up to the street, which the city paid to level, and on the other side huge craters.  The city would pay for the streets to be brought to the correct elevation but required land owners to either excavate or fill in their own lands to get to the proper level.  It was really fascinating.

Below is a video I found on youtube of the exhibit.  Pretty cool.  Visit the museum’s website here.

xoxoxo

danielle

So close, and yet SO CLOSE!

30 May

The storefront is up… The product is being received… The Dredgers Union is so close indeed!

Progress at the Dredgers Union Store

29 Apr

Where have we been? Where haven’t we been…

“Nothing great ever comes easy”, and this store is going to be beyond great! If anyone has walked past the site on East 4th Street, you may have noticed some heavy activity. Here is a look at what has been going on behind the plywood facade…


More images can be seen here …
http://www.flickr.com/photos/dredgersunion

– sEan

Venice Italy

26 Feb

Not much to say here.  Venice is an unrelentingly good photo subject.  I could have a blind fold on and take a good picture here, of this there is little doubt.  I just wanted to post some of my favorites from this morning’s walk.

It is carnival, so I will do a separate post of just that when I have time.  The costumes are outrageous and even I am dressing up for it tonight!

ALL ITALY PICS HERE

x oxo danielle

Planes Trains Automobiles AND Boats! Welcome to Venice Italy!

26 Feb

I have taken just a few of the pics from my first day in Italy and POLADROIDed them!  You may remember when I used the poladroid for my PARIS PICS on my last blog HERE.

This has been quite the adventure already!  I have never been on a REALLY BIG plane before.  I can’t recall what type of plane it actually was and I no longer have my boarding pass which may have told me, but it was big AND as a side note for others who fly often, and may be as obsessed with their Continental One Pass miles as I am, it was interesting that this was a plane with the Continental logo on the tail but the brand spelled across it’s belly was U N I T E D. That was the first time I have seen physical evidence of the merger.

Milan’s airport was very instinctive and operated pretty much just as any other airport experience except for the addition of customs, but I swear to you if you blink or sneeze you’ll have missed the entire customs process altogether, I was stamped and through it before I even realized I had been in a customs line.

The immediate recognition of Italian as the primary language coming out of nearly everyone’s mouth and standing next to an actual supermodel at baggage claim were otherwise the only indicators that I had essentially woken up across the ocean and in another country.

Turns out that Italian is not remotely instinctive to me.  I keep trying to use French here and cannot, no matter how many time I refer to my guide book, commit to memory language basics, “oui” falls out of my mouth instead of “si”.  EVERY.TIME.

Leaving the airport I took an hour long bus ride to Milan’s Central Station (pictured above) where I caught my train to Venice, and then took a water taxi to Piazza San Marco, which is where my hotel is (thankfully) located.  I am grateful for having selected the hotel that I did because the labrynth of walkways are so confusing that all I need to do is make my way back to the Piazza and I have found my hotel.

Speaking of my hotel…the room is as charming as it appeared on the internet and I LOVE it!  the picture below is the the roof across from my bedroom window.

Well, not spending much time online, but tonight is CARNAVAL here in Venice, so I am sure to be taking a LOT of photos and hope to get a chance in the next couple days to get more pics posted.

Ciao for now!  And you can revisit Paris Trip 09 pics HERE too if you want to take a visual vacation!

ALL ITALY PICS HERE

xoxoxo danielle