Sidewalks by Neighborhood

Sidewalks are a critical component of New York City residents’ commute. Ample sidewalks in neighborhoods are important for commuting, businesses, and physical activity. Greater sidewalk area facilitates safer pedestrian traffic that, in turn, attracts businesses and fosters community. “Sidewalk area” measures the percent of a neighborhood that is covered by sidewalk area.

 About the Measure

Sidewalk Area – Percent of Land Area

How Calculated: 

The total sidewalk area (curb-to-building) in km2 within the UHF neighborhood divided by the total land area (excluding inland water bodies). Higher percentages indicate greater sidewalk area, with zero representing no sidewalk area.

For more information, visit

Source: The Built Environment & Health Project (BEH), Columbia University

The Blinding of a Building

The blinding of a building, as seen on West 128th Street.

Written on the official stationary of the Harlem Messiah

It’s not often you come across an item like this in Ebay which purports to be “Written on the official stationary of the Harlem Messiah.”

The item is ephemeral from the 1930’s Depression-era faith community of Father Devine, who led many Harlemites into hope when so many faced an unprecedented wall of economic and racial dispair.

Father Devine’s popularity allowed his organization to purchase this building on West 128th Street, just west of 5th Avenue which had been a Catholic home for nuns – and founded in more prosperous 1921.

The building has changed hands, and is now the Christ Temple of the Apostolic Faith.

For the full Ebay details, see this listing.

Election Day!

Long Gallery Harlem

Make the time to visit the Long Gallery Harlem (2073 Adam Clayton Powell, Jr Blvd.) before the current (fantastic) show closes on August 14th

(Make sure to check hours and call ahead):

INTERIOR DIALOGUE is an exhibition about social perspectives through the lens of the artist’s personal life experience.  The works are engaged in the active centering of the artists’ intersectional identities through the critical lens of decoration and ornament. This work explores how aesthetics often buttress systems of appropriation, oppression, and erasure. Norsworthy asserts that aesthetics are often used as a vehicle to justify the commodification of cultures and, by proxy, communities.

The exhibition is couched within a created environment that interrogates ‘Whiteness.’ The white-box space is defined by Norsworthy’s latest wallpaper work, Blackity (2021), and a series of objects that traverse function, decoration, and art object. The exhibition is held together with six tondos, each depicting an antique European vessel. Images of these ceramic artifacts were sourced from online and estate auctions. The vases are centered in the round space, and each sit atop a surface situated against a highly decorative backdrop.  Although the vases appear to be depictions of beauty and decoration, they function on another level as symbolic representations of the artist. 

The three planes in each tondo (the vase, the surface, and the background) conceptually evoke ways of understanding foregrounding identity within larger conversations of intersectionality. The hierarchy of these planes, vis-a-vis weight and importance, shift between the six tondos; with each acting as a different visual strategy that describes the interplay of object and background. The objecthood of the central object holds power, but is also at the whim of the space within which it is placed. 

For Norsworthy, the process of creating these circular works was an exercise in identity-centered space-making, an idea that pivots the idea of ‘ownership’ from other to self. The titles of the works speak to this contemplation:  The parenthetical titles, Lot #1, Lot #2, etc. play with the idea of commodification, creating a double entendre of the contemporary auction market while also evoking the violent history of the ‘auction block’ and the repercussions from Antebellum America that still reverberate today. 

Governor Cuomo Gives $11,000,000 to Build Supportive Housing for Formerly Incarcerated or Mentally Challenged Homeless Men and Women

Bishop’s House on West 128th Street (east of Lenox) will be demolished and a 9 story building for supportive housing will be built.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that the state would provide nearly $11 million in funding toward two new supportive housing developments in Upper Manhattan.

Through the state’s Homeless Housing and Assistance Program, the funding will help provide 71 supportive housing units at Bishop House Apartments in Central Harlem, operated by the nonprofit The Bridge, as well as 56 additional units at the Jericho House in Harlem.

Unlike standard homeless shelter units, supportive housing units primarily serve homeless residents with other issues, from recent incarceration to mental health conditions — offering an array of services designed to provide residents with the necessities to lead stable lives off the streets.



Harlem, Cuba or Harlem, Montana

While looking on Ebay recently I came across a token from Halrem, Montana which led me to wonder how many other places are named Harlem, or Haarlem, for that matter.

The Dutch histories that link South Africa and Suriname are logical sites for Haarlem placenames. (Interestingly, under force in the 17th Century, the Dutch surrendered claims to Dutch North America – including New York and Harlem – for Suriname which was then controlled by the British)

But I had no idea that there were so many Harlems in the U.S.

The Harlem in Cuba, was perhaps the most shocking to me, but the others are fascinating as well.

To look up place names from around the world, see: which is worth visiting if just to see a classic, early 2000’s look and feel website (note the barely functioning banner ad, the cartouche buttons, and the use of ‘placemarks’ – a kind of ads-on-a-map naming possibility.)

Erasing Stone

This looks as if it might have been a costly mistake. A carved limestone cornerstone, detailing the founding of the church on West 128 at 5th Avenue:

When suddenly it was realized that it should read 1932, not 1952 as the ‘Organized’ date.

Whether or not the cornerstone was already cemented in, or the tweak was done before it was laid, nevertheless, someone carefully carved the “5” and tried to make it appear to be a “3”