Walks in New York and elsewhere

My comments on buildings, shops, restaurants that catch my eye as I wander around New York City and other places.

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Location: New York, New York, United States

Friday, October 07, 2005

East of First

Below Tudor City, 42nd Street continues to First Avenue and beyond. Just to the south is the United Nations headquarters. That is the Secretariat building pictured to the right. The UN buildings are located on a sizable, parklike plot of land donated by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. A international team of architects, including Le Corbusier were responsible for the planning and design of the complex, under the chairmanship of Wallace K. Harrison.

Visiting the UN is a very touristy but worthwhile activity for anyone who is interested in art and architecture.

On the south side of the street is the rather desolate Robert Moses Playground, named in 1982 for an active and notorious parks commissioner (although that title does not begin to describe his activities) although the park opened in 1941. A good chunk of its space is taken up by the Queens-Midtown tunnel's ventilating tower.

The fence at the far eastern side of the park lists the names of some of Moses's achievements. A plaque at the entrance provides a paean to his accomplishments. Robert Caro's tome, The Power Broker, tells a rather different tale.


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