Reporting from NYC

Reporting from New York City

Between July 2015 and August 2016, I worked as a general assignment reporter for a group of four local newspapers that serve different parts of Manhattan. Between regular weekly assignments and beat reporting on police precincts, courts and City Hall, as well as the occasional breaking news, I also pitched countless enterprise stories on everything from the long-gone Syrian community that once flourished in the Financial District to the lives of Hell’s Kitchen’s Christmas tree vendors.

Sam Rosenberg started working in the Flower District when he was still a teenager.Perennial neighborhood florists rooted in tradition
A profile of the entrepreneurs and wholesale florists who populate 
the block-long Flower District on Manhattan’s far West Side.
For Chelsea Now in Aug. 2016.

The 565-foot crane crashed down along two blocks of Worth St. between Hudson and Church Sts. Photo by Milo Hess.Colossal crane crashes in Tribeca, killing one, injuring three, closing Worth St.
Crane wreck spurs some reforms, but locals demand more oversight
Worth St. rip up: Street scarred by crane wreck braces for construction apocalypse
City forms crane safety group to probe deadly Worth St. collapse
Lowering the boom: Tribecans vow to push city on crane safety reforms

On-the-spot reporting from the day a large construction crane collapsed in Tribeca, killing one man and shutting down a large part of the neighborhood. Subsequent articles chronicle the aftermath of the accident in the community and the city’s efforts to reform crane safety regulations.
For Downtown Express in Feb. & June 2016.

pBorscht mecca still struggling to reopen after 2nd Ave. blast
Something to challah about! B&H dairy restaurant reopens
On Second Ave., trying to rebuild apartments, and lives, is taking time
‘Gas House Gang’ indicted in deadly 2nd Ave. explosion
2nd Ave. tenants sue city, Con Ed, landlord for ’15 gas explosion
A series of articles on the aftermath of a deadly gas explosion in the East Village in 2015 that levelled three buildings and rendered dozens of families homeless overnight. The first two pieces are on an 80-year-old kosher dairy’s quest to reopen after the blast; the third is a feature about a few tenants’ progress in rebuilding their lives six months on; and the last two chronicle a legal case against the buildings’ owners and the city.

For The Villager in 2015/16.

The battered Fritz Koenig-designed sphere that famously survived the collapse of the World Trade Center, has spent the past 14 years exiled to a grove of trees in The Battery, but it may soon find a place in Liberty Park, overlooking the 9/11 memorial plaza — where many locals say the iconic sculpture really belongs.Fate of WTC Sphere keeps turning
WTC Sphere set to move to Liberty Park

Articles on the Fritz Koenig Sphere, the iconic sculpture that stood in the World Trade Center plaza until it was damaged in the 9/11 attack. Now located in Battery Park, some local residents and relatives of the victims have been pushing for it to be included in the 9/11 Memorial instead.

For Downtown Express in Jan. & June 2016.

Helaina Hovitz, seen here as a first-grader at the Early Childhood Center (now PS 150), enjoyed a downright idillic life in the years before the trauma of 9/11 changed it forever.From horror to hope: Memoir chronicles young girl’s recovery from 9/11 trauma
A profile of Helaina Hovitz, who experienced the horrors of 9/11 first-hand as a child in Lower Manhattan and has written a book about her struggle with PTSD in the aftermath of the attack.
For Downtown Express in May 2016.

screen-shot-2016-11-05-at-22-42-01Bayview to become state’s first ‘Women’s Building’
An inside look at Bayview, soon to be transformed
Women’s Building envisioned as ‘vertical neighborhood’
A final look behind Bayview’s walls
Coverage of plans to convert a former women’s prison in Manhattan into a center for women’s rights organizations — from the governor’s announcement of the project to the planning stage, and including a tour through the prison before its conversion.
For Chelsea Now in 2015/16.

Raphael Toledano was probably not smiling like this when he was arrested for aggravated assault a few years ago in his hometown in New Jersey.Toledano tenants unite to fight eviction efforts in East Village buildings
An E.V. landlord’s past assault conviction has his tenants worried
Heavy metal Toledano; Tenements’ lead levels are through the roof
I’ll get the lead out,’ ‘Heavy Metal Toledano’ tells pols, Health Dept.
A series of articles on Raphael Toledano, a young real estate heir, and his eviction battles with scores of tenants in his East Village properties.

For The Villager from Dec. 2015 — May 2016.

The feds recently pledged $176 million for storm-resiliency projects meant to protect Lower Manhattan from the Lower East Side to the northern tip of Battery Park City but that money won’t be nearly enough. Photo courtesy National Disaster Resilience Competition.Drop in the bucket: New fed funds won’t pay tab for Downtown flood protection projects
Rising tides: Downtown flooding linked to climate change
Two articles about the need for better flood protection in Lower Manhattan and the city and state’s struggle to move quickly on storm-resiliency projects, as well as the potential effects of climate change on future flooding in New York Harbor.
For Downtown Express in Jan. & March 2016.

Peter Stanford, founder of the South Street Seaport Museum, died on Mar. 24, aged 89. Photo by Nelson M. Chin.RIP: Peter Stanford, founder of the South Street Seaport Museum
Obituary of Peter Stanford, an unparalleled advocate for Lower Manhattan’s waterfront who saved many of the neighborhood’s historic remnants for future generations.

For Downtown Express in March 2016.

The administration of Mayor Bill de Blasio wants to remove horse-drawn carriages from the city's streets.West Side stables are holdouts of old New York
Whinny the coup: Horse carriage plan meets opposition
Whoa, Nellie! Many questions about carriage bill
City council calls off carriage vote
A series on the mayor of New York City’s controversial and ultimately unsuccessful fight to ban Central Park’s iconic horse-drawn carriages. The first piece is a profile of the city’s five remaining horse stables — all located within a few blocks in Hell’s Kitchen.

For Chelsea Now, Manhattan Express and The Villager in 2015/16.

The right age to shape up: At 73, Vera Konig doesn’t pull any punches, and still works out at X-Fit twice a week. Veteran boxer’s gym fights for survival
A profile of Jimmy Fusaro, a former amateur boxer and champion, and his struggling X-Fit gym in Chelsea.
For Chelsea Now in Jan. 2016.

Library of Congress The denizens of Little Syria brought the Middle East’s entrepreneurial spirit to their Lower Manhattan enclave, as businessmen (above) or smaller-scale merchants (below right).Saving ‘Little Syria’: A push to preserve last remnants of Downtown’s Arab quarter
A feature on Little Syria, a small area in Lower Manhattan that was once home to a large immigrant population from the Orient, and the preservationists fighting to landmark the quarter’s physical remnants in the neighborhood.

For Downtown Express in Dec. 2015.

Tom Gilmartin, who comes to the city from Alaska every year to sell Christmas trees, was shaking out a fir on the sidewalk in front of his stand.Urban jungle as winter forest, when tree vendors descend
Profiles of the Christmas tree vendors that flood New York City’s sidewalks starting in late November and sometimes travel from as far away as Alaska to peddle their firs to New Yorkers.
For Chelsea Now in Dec. 2015.

10 Hudson Yards seen across from the West Side rail yards and the High Line. Photo by Steve Freihon for Related-Oxford.Business in store as Hudson Yards rises
Hudson Yards, from the pits to the heights
Start of a new stop: 7 line comes to Hudson Yards
At Hudson Yards, managing a site while sculpting a city
Hudson Yards culinary component gets beefed up
Hudson Yards Closes a Year of Billion-Dollar Deals

A selection of articles on the burgeoning Hudson Yards neighborhood rising on the West Side of Manhattan. Built atop active train yards, the $20bn development is one of the largest private infrastructure projects ever built in the United States. Includes an account of the landmark opening of the Hudson Yards subway stop — the first new station to open in the city in 25 years.
For Chelsea Now from Aug.—Dec. 2015.

The tunnels in Manhattan and Queens have been fully excavated, but work will continue on tracks and platforms for at least five years.In “caves” below Grand Central, East Side Access project on track
With a pickaxe to Grand Central floor, East Side Access project finally breaks through
A tour of the giant $10bn East Side Access subway project, which will bring trains from Long Island directly into Grand Central Terminal by 2020.

For Manhattan Express in Nov. 2015.

Tension boils over, when a family full of loons gathers for turkey day. Photo by Scott Fetterman.Three-day arts fest brings Burning Man ethos to Governors Island
MCC Theater heading to a home in Hell’s Kitchen
Love, lust, and home repair 
(FringeNYC 2015)
A Thanksgiving stuffed with secrets and lies 
(FringeNYC 2015)
Interconnected scenes from an Emergency Room
 (FringeNYC 2014)
A long wait that’s worth the trip (FringeNYC 2014)
Various arts coverage, including a festival preview, an interview feature on the new home of an Off-Broadway theater, as well as various reviews of plays at FringeNYC in 2014 and 2015.
For Chelsea Now and The Villager in 2014-16.