Thursday, November 12, 2015

Why not the Steinway Mansion?

From the NY Times:

Mr. Singleton, the executive director of the Greater Astoria Historical Society, started an offshoot called Friends of Steinway Mansion in 2011, when the mansion went on the market for the first time in nearly 90 years. Mr. Singleton did not raise the money to buy the place, but that did not stop him from pressing for it to become “a spark to revitalize the area,” perhaps as an arts center. Or maybe a community center. Or a museum.

In September, he excitedly called supporters, saying that someone with deep pockets had contacted him and outlined a plan to buy the mansion and set up the music school. Mr. Singleton, corresponding with the person by email, sought and received a promise that the person would attend the historical society’s already scheduled meeting on Sept. 21 and talk about what he had in mind.

The person was a no-show, but by then, Mr. Singleton was not surprised. A few days before the meeting, the Gmail account that the man had been using was terminated and his Facebook page disappeared.

“Pretty elaborate setup to be a simple hoax,” Mr. Singleton said then.

The hoax played out as construction crews built a retaining wall and began work on new light-industrial buildings in what was left of the mansion’s front lawn. That is why Mr. Singleton now refers to the hoax as a sideshow. To him, the main event is the mansion itself, even with the changes to its surroundings.

“It’s New York,” Mr. Singleton said. “To anyone else, that’s a problem, but in New York, the realm of the possible is at our doorstep. Yeah, there’s a waste treatment plant there. There’s a waste treatment plant on the Hudson River near the George Washington Bridge. It’s a park. The possibilities are here. History will teach you nothing is insurmountable.”


georgetheatheist said...

More photos (as of Sunday, 11/08) circumnavigating the destruction site here. Look at them good Councilman Constantinides, Senator Peralta, Assemblywoman Simotas et alia. This is all your fault. We will continue to rub your stupid noses into this dreck of a mess here on the Queens Crap blogsite and elsewhere.

AND also the fault BIG TIME of: PETER VALLONE JR. who could have moved his dumb ass while being the Mansion's councilman to have prevented this disgraceful destruction of the Steinway heritage site.

Yup, click on his name above and you'll see his chiacchierone public Facebook page's selfie photo (posted 10/30) which he took in front of the Jolly Judge tavern in Scotland. Why of course he's the "Jolly" Vallone now elected to the Queens Criminal Court! Now how smart of a judge can he be when he doesn't even know that in his Facebook self-posted photo (which we have screen-saved) he's not only posing in front of the tavern sign but also in front of a sewer pipe? That's right a sewer pipe is "growing" out of this dope's head.

Seeing is believing. A picture is worth a thousand words.

Anonymous said...

Steinway behavior just doesn't add up. Sometimes you have to work hard for opportunities. Sometime they fall at your feet. Why is Steinway tripping over this?

You get the impression that they are looking to sell the plant if they don't want to have anything to do with either the mansion or expanding their footprint. They must be the only company in NYC that doesn't want real estate - and that raises some serious questions on who, or what, is advising them and THEIR long term plans.

The other issue is the Steinway mystique and brand. To let this place be abused by the locals is stomach churning to say the least. We are facing a future that could very well be a graphic as kicking an animal around until it is dead. What message does that send to their customer base and their artists? What happens if their competitors use this as a perceived gap between Steinway spin and Steinway reality? When you are at the top, there is only one place to go.

Anonymous said...

I love this - here is a guy that is running for judge (not tax collector but judge) that is touring Europe while running, and posing in front of a bar called the Jolly (Drunk?) Judge?

As a matter of fact, he has just given himself a name - like "Duck Down" Brown, we have The "Jolly Judge" Vallone.

BTW, where their articles about the law firm and issues of probate court - widows estates and such?

Anonymous said...

I am a Model L owner and work at an All Steinway School and must confess both disgust and bewilderment in what is happening.

Anonymous said...

Everyone knows who Karl and Karen really are - for a few months now. So does Barron but he wrote this for Sweeny.

Anonymous said...

You can thank both the Vallones and Sweeney for this mess.

A real black eye for the community and for the brand.

Anonymous said...

I think that Sweeney - and Paulson - and their adviser who will remain nameless - have a lot of questions from the Steinway fans over their cavalier attitude over the Steinway brand.

The future of 'Steinway' does not look good if this is a true reflection the mantle they inherited.

Anonymous said...

Finding a sensitive buyer should have been GAHS's job decades ago when Halberian wanted to first sell it.
Hmmmmm....another eleventh hour fiasco that delivered nothing.

Perry Mason said...

Correction George: the sewer-pipe headed Jolly Judge Vallone will be sitting on the Civil Court bench. Of course, there he can adjudicate more effectively real estate matters.

Anonymous said...

Finding a sensitive buyer should have been GAHS's job decades ago when Halberian wanted to first sell it.
Hmmmmm....another eleventh hour fiasco that delivered nothing.

The community was trying for this long before GAHS was around - an effort doomed to fail after a local dynasty took hold.