Monday, February 2, 2009

Where's NYC Going?

New Yorkers have only one thing on their mind -- money. Well, money and real estate (and real estate is basically just money in tactile form).

It's a given that the current financial crises and resulting scandals are wrecking havoc on the finance and real estate industries in this town, two of the underpinnings of the NYC economy. But how is this actually affecting the lives of New Yorkers, rich and poor?

Two new magazine articles examine this impact in depth. Marie Brenner's Vanity Fair article looks at how the Bernie Madoff Ponzi Scheme has shaken Upper East Side society and the city's upper crust. While no one is going to feel overly sorry for this crowd, this scandal is more than just about lost money: it's about how a whole sub-cultural has been forced to look at itself and not liking what it sees. Also, this week's New York magazine has an article by Gabriel Sherman about Tishman Speyer's 2006 acquisition of Stuyvesant Town, and how it's attempt to turn this working class bastion of city life into the latest Yuppie enclave has been a debacle.

We are living through a turning point in New York City history, in some ways even bigger thaan 9/11. The current economic situation is forcing New York to make hard choices about its priorities. The many industries that fuel this city's economy are changing -- permanently. Crain's New York Business is hosting a conference tomorrow called "The Future of New York City." Mayor Bloomberg and several of the big mucky-mucks in this town will be there trying to figure it out. What's they'll conclude, I have no idea but let's hope they can come up with some good ideas to keep this the #1 city in the world.

You can listen to live coverage of it tomorrow on WNYC 93.9 FM/820 AM Brian Lehrer show.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting article but money is the only thing we care about.

    If may seem like that form your perspective (which you are entitled to) but it is far from it.


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