Sunday, August 5, 2007

Still tweeding after all these years

The safety problems on one of the city's most prominent landmarks went unnoticed until a city Buildings Department manager gazed at Tweed while walking to his office on Chambers St. in lower Manhattan.

Totally glue-less at Tweed

The Buildings Department issued a building code violation for "facade - defective/cracking." The violation is still in effect, but officials agree the city will not have to pay itself a fine.

Tweed was built over 20 years, from 1861 to 1881, as notorious Tammany Hall boss William Marcy Tweed and his cohorts stole untold millions from the project.

Tweed was tried for corruption inside the unfinished building in 1873.

A renovation completed just as former Mayor Rudy Giuliani left office cost the city $89 million - almost three times initial estimates.

Still, preservationists rejoiced at the time, saying the public would finally get to see the courthouse's spectacular staircases, skylights and dramatic interior courtyard in all their restored glory.

Then Mayor Bloomberg decided to put the city Education Department's offices in the building, rather than the Museum of the City of New York, which had been promised the space.


Photo from Daily News

3 comments:

connie said...

I workd in lower Manhattan for more than a decade and walked past that building on a daily basis. I don't remeber a time when it wasn't under some sort of renovation. $89 million and they still couldn't get it right. Is anyone going to be accountable for this sloppy job?

Anonymous said...

Ya gotta admit, Boss Tweed was far ahead of his times in the extortion and corruption arena.
He set the benchmarks that many of our "exalted" (ahem) "elected" officials strive to emulate today.

I can just imagine the curriculum at the
Tweed Academy of Political Studies .
The course catalogue might well read:

general chicanery

building with bribery in mind

basic & advanced renovation overcharges

the necessity of expensive feasibility studies

awarding contracts to friends

justifying $10 a brick construction work

expediting the purchase of politicians

making Mulligan Stew
out of municipal book keeping

self certified carpetbagging

up the down zoning staircase

Etc. etc.

Anonymous said...

that courthouse is stunning, inside and out. what a shame that NYers aren't able to view the interior architecture. bloomie strikes again!