In This Week's [em]Observer[/em]…

High Line Sweeps West Chelsea Clean
“The mission of the High Line, the future park that will rest on an elevated train platform slicing across 22 Manhattan blocks, is to slow down. The park’s designers want the experience of it to be meditative, a break from hustled urban life. But just beyond its limits–which stretch only as wide as the skinny platform at 30 to 60 feet–there is a frenzied contrast.”
Go to story by John Koblin.

Reclusive Ratner Gives to Mayor’s Pet Causes
“In December 2005, right as the debate over the Atlantic Yards complex was heating up and before the city made several crucial decisions about the project, Forest City Ratner gave between $450,000 and $1 million to a nonprofit closely associated with Mayor Michael Bloomberg.”
Go to story by Matthew Schuerman.

Jerry Speyer’s Lipstick Collar
“The Philip Johnson trophy, the Lipstick Building at 885 Third Avenue, is officially up for sale. Tishman Speyer, and its investment partner, Prudential Real Estate Investors, is looking to sell the entire building, said Bill Shanahan, the investment sales broker at CB Richard Ellis.”
British firm stakes a $225 M. claim in East Harlem
“A British real-estate firm will make its debut in the city with a massive $225 million portfolio buy of 47 buildings in East Harlem and seven condo units in the East Village.”
Go to Commercial Breaks by John Koblin.

Of Mice and Mangia in Midtown
“A mustachioed man in a tan trench coat milled anxiously outside the newly reopened Cafe Fonduta during his lunch break on Monday, admittedly wondering whether it was actually safe to go inside.”
Go to Counter Espionage by Chris Shott.

‘Perfectionist’ Party Planner Nabs $4.49 M. Flatiron Flat
“Superstar party-planner David Tutera has very particular tastes, so he looked at more than 75 New York apartments before settling on a full-floor condo at East 21st Street’s Infinity Flats listed at $4.495 million.”
Big Yin Buys Big Apartment for $3.85 M.
“Despite his illustriously shaggy hair and dirty mouth, sexagenarian Scottish comedian Billy Connolly isn’t (yet) a humor icon in America. Maybe that will change for New Yorkers: He and his wife Pamela, a comedienne-turned-psychotherapist, have bought a Flatiron District apartment.”
Go to Manhattan Transfers by Max Abelson.

Vacancy! High-End Renters Flee to Buy
“Could the suddenly busy sales market be draining Manhattan’s luxury rentals? Landlords and brokerages report more luxury tenants leaving, partly due to a largely unexplainable upturn in the Manhattan sales market this past winter.”
Go to The Lab by Tom Acitelli.

Childs: ‘Most Extraordinary Project Ever Done’
“For David Childs, the Freedom Tower’s merely the tip of his Gotham iceberg–there’s also Moynihan Station, vetting other ground-zero architects, and using I.M. Pei’s advice to navigate City Hall.”
Go the The Sit-Down by Matthew Schuerman.

The Greening of Domino
“On Thursday, March 15, Domino magazine became the latest to celebrate a “green issue,” at Industria Super Studio, with eco-friendly paper towels and mops and almonds and other props.”
Go to Interiors by Toni Schlesinger.

Deeds and Deals
A Week in New York Real Estate