Urban Renewal

As he was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, "Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!" "Do you see all these great buildings?" replied Jesus. "Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down." (Mark 13:1)

Urban Renewal
Urban Renewal

Since it's initial settlement, New York City has been in a constant state of change. The changes ebb and flow with the fortunes of the city - decline and disrepair when times are bad, restoration and replacement when times are good. Constrained by dense development and island geography, New York City cannot choose the path that so many other American cities have chosen, abandoning town centers for shiny, personality-free suburbs extending endlessly out onto converted farmland. Grand and venerable works of architecture often find themselves replaced with lesser structures in the name of progress. And, yet, some ghosts of the past survive in fading signs or incongruously abandoned buildings in the midst of some of the most expensive neighborhoods in the world.

This section is devoted to things that ain't what they used to be. The heady early years of the 21st century were one of those periodic moments of robust transformation and it was an almost everyday occurance to notice another quaint 19th century building being replaced with a generic glass curtain-wall tower. In walking around the city I found myself drawn to photograph these moments of dynamism, along with repurposed buildings and relics of the past that managed to survive despite the best efforts of developers to vanquish history. Those photographs are presented here for your amusement and contemplation.

60th Street Railyard

Atlantic Yards


Columbia University Expansion



Ghost Signs

Hells Kitchen

High Line



Second Avenue Subway

Upper West Side


West Side Urban Renewal

Westside Railyard

Willets Point