Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Video: Robert Moses - Master Builder


This answers some of the questions that you may have about why certain things are the way they are in this city and beyond. Great video. Bravo.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

What would NYC/LI have been like today if Moses had at least as much zeal for public transit as he had for roads and car-oriented city development? Moses's neglect and contempt for public transit and walkable neighborhoods has had a severe and irreversible impact on the area.

Klink Cannoli said...

Great find, QC.

"What would NYC/LI have been like today..."

Probably ankle high in horse manure and muddied dirt roads. Proper city living circa 1920s.

kingb said...

there were some nice things he accomplished, but the negatives of his auto-centric thinking plagues the city to this day.

Anonymous said...

"Special thanks to Robert A. Caro"???? Did this guy actually READ Caro's book ("The Master Builder")? It was hardly an ode to the so-called Master Builder.
Meanwhile Joseph Papp is spinning in his grave...
What a piece of drek.

Klink Cannoli said...

Caro...
What can you expect from a disciple of the Kremlin on the Charles.

Gary the Agnostic said...

Klink Cannoli said...
Caro...
What can you expect from a disciple of the Kremlin on the Charles.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

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Have you read "The Power Broker"? What was innaccurate about what Caro wrote?

Anonymous said...

Don't blame him for everything, La guardia took $$$ from ford and gm to tear down the 3rd ave el in bklyn and replace it with a highway.

Klink Cannoli said...

My point was not a comment in the specific facts presented by a Caro about Moses, but how they were presented and what was presented. The ideological impression, through the pen, was obvious. Specially when one looks at the source; where he was educated, what other works he's produced, the social-political air of the times, etc.

An inordinate amount of comments about Moses always seem to focus in one direction and unfairly so. A city as large, dynamic and historic as New York is a bear to introduce modernization on such scale. It is this why such monikers as "The Great xxx" are given to men.

Gary the Agnostic said...

Anonymous said...
Don't blame him for everything, La guardia took $$$ from ford and gm to tear down the 3rd ave el in bklyn and replace it with a highway.

Thursday, December 03, 2009
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Ummm. No. LaGuardia no doubt approved, but that was Moses' idea.

Anonymous said...

believe bobby's kept busy eternally revamping the levels and districts in hell.

how many neighborhoods destroyed and lives disrupted ?.

Queensdude said...

A comment from the video maker:

Moses was indeed a controversial figure. Of course I read Caro's excellent biography. I know all about the Cross Bronx Expy. and the never-built Brooklyn-Battery Bridge, Lower Manhattan Expy. and Midtown Expy.

Two years ago, three museums in NYC mounted an exhibition of some of the Master Builder's works. This was an attempt to balance decades of Moses-bashing and give the man some credit for his lasting public works.

As a lifelong Queens resident who recently retired to Florida, I think back fondly to how Moses impacted my life growing up a disadvantaged Queens youth.

I learned how to swim in Astoria Pool and remember paying a dime to get in or even free if you came early.

I remember playing handball at St. Michael's Park tucked in between the supports of the BQE on leftover land that Moses used for playgrounds. Moses was avid swimmer and believed in physical fitness. His 642 local playgrounds with basketball, handball and tennis was his attempt to instill healthy exercise facilities for the average person.

I learned how to drive right after Moses improved the GCP for the 64-65 World's Fair and rode the parkways out to Jones Beach, a facility that planners from around the world come to study as an example of the best that public works can offer.

More recently, I worked in Sheepshead Bay and commuted from Floral Park in just 25 minutes. This trip would take 2 hours without the Belt and/or Jackie Robinson Parkways.

There's no doubt that Moses was a tyrant who resorted to political blackmail in order to twist arms to get his way. His tactics would never succeed today. We can't go back in time and undo his dirtier dealings.

But to blame Moses for mirroring the racist, automobile-centric society that America was (and to a smaller extent still is today)and call him totally evil is not realistic.

I simply wanted to focus on the visionary aspect of Moses and how our lives today are enmeshed in his works.

--Queensdude