East River Plaza

Most Harlem residents have visited East River Plaza (Target, Costco, Aldi, etc.) at 117th street and Harlem River Drive at least once over the years.

The site – owned by Brookfield Properties – was once a wire factory that made springs, musical wires (think pianos), and industrial and commercial wires of every sort.

I recently came across an item for sale, clipped from a vintage newspaper, that not only showed the huge number of wire products produced, but also the factory itself.

Note that the factory was directly on the water, and a sailing ship was docked at the factory (no Harlem River Drive), showing that the factory was located there precisely for water transportation of supplies and the finished wire products.

For many drivers on the Harlem River Drive, the factory was a landmark until it was razed for the shopping complex.

Here is the link to the item:



Over on the west side of Harlem, a creative entrepreneur built a sidewalk extension out of PVC pipes. It’s a creative strategy that never would have occurred to me, but somehow works.

You might not immediately identify it when you first see it from a distance:

but up close, it’s definitely PVC in all its glory.