On the Waterfront, There’s No Place Like Home: Mayor Bloomberg’s Tidal Wave of Development Washes Out

On Sunday night, The Observer encountered Justin Broomfield unpacking his BMW SUV in the driveway of Northside Piers, setting a suitcase, two golf bags, a case of wine and three cases of beer onto a dolly. He said he had just returned from a business trip—otherwise his family would have been out at their place in the country instead of making do at home. “I think our Toll Brothers construction can hold up,” Mr. Broomfield said, referring to the building’s developer. “Besides, we’re on the 26th floor, so we’ll have a good view of the storm.”

If anything, that was the most remarkable thing to hear, and we heard it over and over again. There was frustration, fear, indifference and excitement swirling around the storm, but almost no one would trade his or her life on the waterfront for something a little safer and less dramatic. “I guess if this became an annual thing, I might start to think about moving, but it’s pretty nice otherwise,” Mr. Broomfield said.

“This is not a hole in the ground,” Jim Butler, the stereo enthusiast, said. “The waters will come in, and then they will recede. It’s not New Orleans. It’ll be a big deal for a day or two, and then we get to go back to living our life on the waterfront, which is just the greatest place to be.”