Manhattan today is, surprisingly, only the third most populous of the five boroughs, after Brooklyn and Queens.
It’s also not the only borough with ‘must-see’ attractions; in fact, a lot of what New Yorkers may take for granted falls into the category of ‘must-see’ (at least, for us rubes).
Similarly, some of the natural, historical, out-of-the-way wonders in Metro Vancouver are the target of not nearly enough weekday, out-of-town visitors — think Lighthouse Park, Buntzen Lake, Fort Langley, or Centennial Beach. Perhaps thats because we don’t take the time to distract them from Canada Place, Gastown and Granville Island long enough to say, “Go see this other thing — it’s worth the trip.”
Such is the value of a little prior knowledge, a good map, and of course, an extended public transit network.
And so, on one of his last days of vacation, we follow Gordon Price on his journey out of ‘The City’. You can also follow along on Instagram.
Hudson Yards, self-promoted as the biggest real-estate project In North America, a multi-phase, largely office-tower development over the rail and subway yards in the far West 30s. Sixteen towers planned for the first phase, largely by Kohn Pedersen Fox. It’s already changing the skyline on those newscasts with the compulsory establishing shot. And they’re all a shade of blue. What is it with developers and designers that they insist on a single colour with little variation in shades. ‘Harmony’? Branding? A great deal on buying glass in bulk? The style will seem dated in a few decades. But then, so does Rockefeller Centre.
Two towers on the Jersey and New York shores frame the entrance to the Hudson River. When the agricultural wealth from the Northwest empire flowed from fields beyond the Adirondack Mountains, through the Erie Canal, down the Hudson, New York’s future as a trading port and city of finance was assured. It would help feed the industrial revolution and make money every step of the way.
Has anything changed the experience of travelling, at least in big cities, than maps, apps and information easily accessible and always available on your phone. The first-time visitor has more choices, with step-by-step instructions, than the most transit knowledgeable long-time resident. It’s freedom from fear – the fear of getting lost or stranded. Logically, it should mean tourists take more risks, and be willing to explore or find destinations off the beaten track. Because, in a digital sense, all tracks are beaten. The question is: do they?
I’m pretty sure I’m one of the only white guys on the 7 – known by some as the Orient Express because of the immigrant neighbourhoods in this part of Queens. It’s more diverse than that, and not all that different from most of the trains I’ve been on in New York, or the Canada Line for that matter. Transit is where we see our real selves; it’s access for all. It’s why I wanted to get off Manhattan.