Seven ‘Mosaic Trail’ Light Poles Reinstated Around the Reconfigured Astor Place

Posted on: November 21st, 2016 at 5:00 am by
This image has been archived or removed.

Last week was a busy one in the reconfigured (nay, sanitized) Astor Place. The pedestrian plaza is officially “reopened” after two years under the knife, and the Alamo Cube is again spinning. The final component to complete the trifecta – Jim Power’s Mosaic Trail light poles – is also in place.

Seven of the Mosaic Man’s artful ornaments now dot the area, each highlighting important aspects of East Village history. Their installation began toward the end of the summer and concluded on Friday, albeit with one hiccup. Apparently one pole is not totally complete due to a lack of funding.

“There is one pole that is still wrapped up for future mosaic art as we raise the funds to complete it, but all are in their final location,” Village Alliance executive director William Kelley told us in an email.

To that end, The Village Alliance, City Lore, advocacy groups, and private individuals kickstarted a crowdfunding campaign months ago to pay for the $22,000 restoration. However, according to a recent press release, the project has “stalled in it final stages” due to labor cost overruns. Target budget was $20,000 “to ensure the final elements of restoration can be completed to the artist’s vision”; they’ve raised $4,500 of that goal thus far.

This image has been archived or removed.

Photo: Astor Place Instagram

Official inauguration of the Mosaic Trail poles in November 29 at 11:30am.

It’s worth reiterating that this reinstatement would not have happened without the help of the community. During this two-year ordeal, a group of friends and supporters that counts City Lore, the Village Alliance, Bob Holman (Bowery Poetry) and Clayton Patterson in its ranks, together donated time and mental power to ensure that the artistic legacy of Jim Power remains intact at this historic crossroads.

Meanwhile, Jeremiah over at Vanishing NY has written at length about how the city continues to privatize and commodify our public spaces. Astor Place is just another example, made immediately clear by the Game of Thrones publicity stunt that closed off the area around the Cube over the weekend.

Recent Stories

One Week After Reopening, Nathan Straus Playground is Again Locked

Not so fast. One week after the Parks Department unlocked Nathan Straus Playground to the public, it’s again gated. Readers report that the padlocks returned on Tuesday without any communication from the city. As reported, the Lower East Side park, which abuts the Attorney Street cul-de-sac, had been closed without notice for nearly a month […]

Parisi Bakery Building on Elizabeth Street Listed for $5.99M

The NoHo building housing Parisi Bakery is up for sale, and the store may not survive. Robert Parisi – building owner and former head baker of the family business – listed 290 Elizabeth Street on the market. He’s seeking $5.99 million for the seven-unit, mixed-use tenement. Parisi purchased the property in 1983 for $200,000, property […]

Astor Place Hair to Close Permanently Next Month Due to Pandemic

You’ve seen, you’ve read, you’ve heard. News broke over the weekend that Astor Place Hairstylists, a bastion of affordable cuts, is closing down for good. Barring some miracle, the 74-year-old business will be another victim of this dreadful pandemic. Apparently, management informed staff last Friday. Its final day on the namesake block is at the […]

See the Subways with the MTA’s Live Subway Map

It’s been a long time coming, but the MTA map is finally going digital. Now officially in beta, the MTA’s “Live Subway Map” is a dynamic interface showing real time train locations, arrival times, and service alerts, among other pertinent info for New York denizens. And it arrives at a time when subway ridership numbers […]

When a Rat Skeleton Falls through Your Ceiling

This is not a Halloween story, but may as well be. As reported yesterday, deaf and hearing-impaired tenants living at 174 Forsyth Street are demanding remedy for deplorable living conditions. Those affected allege years of neglect that led to extreme disrepair and lack of security, and are holding a press conference this morning to train […]