Fireworks, as seen from Waterside, lit up the night on July 4th. (Photo by Tobias Batz)
By Sabina Mollot
On Saturday, July 4th, with four of Macy’s barges lined up from 23rd to 37th Streets over the East River, residents at Waterside Plaza enjoyed a particularly enviable view of the fireworks this year.
Throughout the evening, with access limited to residents and their guests, between 5,000 and 6,000 people lined up along the outdoor plaza.
Thousands more lined up just north of Waterside’s towers along the car-free FDR Drive. Another fireworks display took place further downtown near the Brooklyn Bridge. Before the sky filled with the familiar flash and boom though, at Waterside, festivities also included a barbecue on the plaza for residents and various kids’ activities.
During this time, Town & Village spoke with residents to ask about what July 4th has been like there over the years.
I was at the Monday, June 22 sanitation garage meeting, where I felt that the forum was chosen because it was not very accessible. I think that the community was not told about it with enough lead time. There were not as many people as I would have expected. And sadly, neither Mr. Garodnick nor Mr. Kavanagh were there.
Because my husband had to go out of town unexpectedly, I had not planned to attend. But neighbors convinced me to, especially because I used to live near the old sanitation garage on East 73rd Street. I lived there for close to three years.
Like the proposal here, they did not keep the garbage there, but there was a stench all year round, which was particularly bad in the summer. There were plenty of flies, but worse, in my opinion, were the rats. They were enormous and I stopped walking to the FDR access road to run to the river overpass by there. I was afraid of the rats.
The traffic was constant and unrelenting. Like 25th Street, 73rd was a two way road that had access to the FDR. Those truck are huge and often blocked the way. The trucks left every two hours during the night, so there was constant noise. I understand the plan here would not allow that, but really, how do we know?