We woke up this morning with no internet and no TV, so we went out for a predawn drive to gauge the state of Brooklyn. The rain was intermittent, and the streets were mostly empty, the odd patrol car creeping down Bedford Avenue in Bed-Stuy, flashing lights but no sirens. Not much was open except for gas stations. Once we made it to the water, the effects of the storm were less severe than we expected. A streetlight down on Bedford Avenue between Third and Fourth streets, some construction debris on Wythe Avenue.
There were a dozen or so livery cars parked outside the Northside Car Service, so we stopped to ask a driver if the bridges were open. Yes, but you have to go around to McGuinness Boulevard and enter from the BQE. We wound our way through Greenpoint, noting that the Bank of America ATM on Manhattan Avenue was working. But when we reached the ramp for the Williamsburg Bridge, a squad car blocked the way.
The city taking McCarren Park’s once-abandoned pool and turning it from a concert venue into a pool was supposed to be a moment of progress, was supposed to represent something wonderful for an ostensibly grateful Williamsburg public. Instead, it’s been a site of typical teenage ruckus, which is typical. The latest? Teenage girls beating the shit out of each other.
Good Love Gone Bad
Did we expect too much? Pinning so many hopes and dreams, desires and expectation on its chlorinated waters? After all, a pool, even a beautifully-restored, impossibly aquamarine beauty like McCarren is still only a pool.
After opening to almost universal acclaim and adoration last week, McCarren Pool’s reputation has plummeted rapidly in recent days, as the pool has been plagued by petty crimes and problems.
McCarren Pool may be located at the epicenter of hipsterdom on the border between Williamsburg an Greenpoint, but its reopening has brought on a strange, unfamiliar feeling in such environs: an earnest, completely unironic, swooning kind of love.
“The tide of consensus has turned,” Charles Graeber, a 42-year-old freelance writer who attended the pool’s opening yesterday told The New York Times. “People are really rather proud. This is a very hopeful, grand, Great Society gesture. Williamsburg is famously hipsterish, sneering and ironic, but there’s nothing ironic about this.”
Everyone is waiting to dive into the revamped McCarren Park Pool at the end of the month, restored to its Robert Moses-era glory after decades of neglect. But another corner every hipster’s favorite park has just been spiffed up thanks to Adidas.
On the other end of McCarren lies a run of seven popular tennis courts besides Automotive High School. Like much of the park, it is a little worse for the wear. Efforts have been afoot to install a bubble for the winter, but at least for the time being, a new windscreen will help keep conditions better during the blustery spring and fall months. And this being Brooklyn, the windscreen had to take on an artistic flair.
fun in the sun
Williamsburg’s McCarren Park once had a pool. The pool gained some notoriety when—after being drained and going unused for several years—it turned into a summertime concert venue (and a pretty popular one) for the last few years. And yet, its days as a concert venue are already over, however, as the city decided to recommission it back to its original use: As a North Brooklyn swimming destination.
And not just any North Brooklyn swimming destination, but one that might be the most anticipated pool opening of the summer, if such a category were to even exist in New York (such as this city’s shortage of great swimming spots is). But if you want to be one of the first ones in it, you’re gonna have to pony up. To the tune of $150.
Welcome, yet again, to the Nu-Williamsburg.
Behind the sagging wire fence, all that’s left of 55 Eckford Street in Greenpoint is a skeleton, its steel ribs turned rusty from months of rain. A tangle of weeds has shot up among the bottles and soggy cardboard covering the ground, and blue construction tarp flaps in the autumn wind. The place smells faintly Read More
The southwest corner of McCarren Park has been a meeting place for breakdancers, or “B-Boys” as they call themselves, since long before the gleaming row of luxury condos rose on Bayard Street, and a doggie daycare and organic market followed.
Anywhere from a couple to a couple dozen breakdancers continue to roll out their Read More