Like Bikes? Celebrate bicycles (and the culture and community that revolves around them) at the biggest Bike Month party around!
PLUS there will be a BICYCLE-THEMED ART EXHIBITION and SILENT AUCTION featuring the work of Rebecca Alvarez, Thomas Beale, Big Noise Films, Black Label Bicycle Club, Mark Brewer, GlassBead Collective, Taliah Lempert, Brandon Neubauer, Peripheral Media, Jesse Pesta, Swoon, Visual Resistance, and others...
WHAT: A great party for a great cause
WHERE: Dick Shea's Studios – 69 West 14th Street at Sixth Ave
WHEN: Saturday, May 20th | from 9PM til very late
It will be a night of surprises; of special guests; of unexpected treasures tucked into off-kilter corners. Two stages on two floors, three bands, four singers, and 6 DJs spinning it until the sun comes up. An art auction, inventive installations, brass bands, Bike-Blended beverages, and more that you have yet to imagine.
LIVE BANDS and DJS EXTRAORDINAIRE (lineup evolving – check website for updates)
including Paul Brill, Roger Manning, the Rude Mechanical Orchestra, Subatomic Sound System, Team Spyder, DJ Dirtyfingers, DJ Dr. Feelgood, DJ Joro-Boro, DJ Kid Magic, DJ Stache, DJ Stefny, DJ Thaddeus, and Mr. Andersonic
THE INFAMOUS BIKE BLENDER BY TIME'S UP!
serving up obnoxiously strong cocktails under the stars
ON-THE-SPOT SILKSCREENING BY ANTIMART
customize your clothing with some visual love!
BIKE-THEMED ART EXHIBITION and SILENT AUCTION
with work by Rebecca Alvarez, Thomas Beale, Big Noise Films, Black Label Bicycle Club, Mark Brewer, GlassBead Collective, Taliah Lempert, Brandon Neubauer, Peripheral Media, Jesse Pesta, Swoon, and Visual Resistance
VIDEO PROJECTIONS and MUG-SHOT PHOTOBOOTH
by GlassBead Collective
Following the west side stadium, the Forest City Ratner project in Brooklyn, Yankee Stadium and the Terminal Market in the Bronx, the latest large scale development proposal in the city comes from Columbia University which seeks to take over the entire neighborhood of west Manhattanville and bulldoze it in order to build itself a new campus. From the city administration’s perspective much of the benefit hinges on the perception of the ”business of knowledge“ as being the new driving force behind New York’s economy. While the significance of universities as propellers of economic development in urban areas is far from established, one fact that emerges with startling clarity is that NYU and Columbia are the two largest landowners in New York City.
Acting more in the vein of a profit-making corporation than an institution dedicated to propagating knowledge, the university has been using the threat of eminent domain to pressure owners to sell. Two years ago it petitioned the state for the right to use eminent domain and has refused to take that threat off the table. The university has been buying up properties in this neighborhood for over 10 years and systematically emptying them out. When the question of blight comes up, it parades its own vacant buildings and empty lots. Mayor Bloomberg came out last week in support of the current regulations for eminent domain as the only way in which a city could encourage urban renewal. A strong advocate of big business philosophies, some say Mayor Bloomberg may be seeking to rival Robert Moses in large scale development projects.
What’s at stake is a vision of the city. In its history, many great men have tried to shape New York City. Some of their projects were great successes, while some neighborhoods have yet to recover, decades later, from their redevelopment. Throughout all these experiments the city seemed to survive by retaining it’s mix (high and low, young and old, immigrants and founding fathers, all races and classes thrown together in greater proximity than anywhere else in the country). Now with an everlasting economic boom and eternally skyrocketing property values, many fear this vital balance is about to be lost.
What will be lost in Manhattanville (a neighborhood most of you have probably never heard of)?
Decent Jobs in the last manufacturing zone in Manhattan
In a district with twice the unemployment of the borough of Manhattan, family owned businesses in Manhattanville provide close to 1,300 jobs which pay more than a living wage. To date Columbia University has predominantly provided low paying service sector jobs for members of the community.
Manhattanville and the surrounding area in Community District 9 is home to one of the last diverse lower income neighborhoods in Manhattan. The announcement of the University’s plans alone has prompted many owners to raise rents, get out of publicly funded programs (including Mitchell-Lama) and evict tenants, all in anticipation of students and professors from outside the city moving in and ”upgrading“ the neighborhood.
A third of the proposed campus will be dedicated to biomedical research. While a great portion of this research only hurts our pockets (when life saving medications are placed out of financial reach due to the hefty licensing fees that universities charge, which is particularly onerous because federal grant money funds a large part of this research). This particular project may endanger our safety as well. The proposed labs would operate at Biosafety Level 3 (out of 4). Level 3 includes the option to work with highly contagious pathogens including SARS, Avian Flu, the Plague, West Nile Virus and Anthrax, to name a few. Supporters of biomedical advances claim that accidents are rare, but the frequency of such incidents is widely disputed even within the scientific community. Columbia University was fined $797,029 in 2002 by the EPA for violations involving storage and disposal of toxic waste and faulty emergency plans. Coupled with the knowledge that Manhattanville is on an active fault line and in the NYC flood plain, what arrangement could possibly make this location safe?
The community in District 9 has been working on its own vision for the development of Manhattanville for over a decade (know as a 197-A plan in city planning lingo). This scheme would not exclude the university, but neither would it grant it exclusive use of this neighborhood. After so much time and effort put in on an entirely volunteer basis, the community’s plan has been tracked alongside the Columbia proposal by the department of city planning. While a large private institution strong-arms local businesses and residents with a wink from the city, what some define as the American dream–including the ethic that you work hard so that one day you can own your own home and that your children will be better off than you are–seems to be more of a fiction than ever before.