Tech classes offered at Flatiron Plaza

A tech class was held on Tuesday evening as part of an annual outdoor program. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

A tech class was held on Tuesday evening as part of an annual outdoor program. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Summer programming is in full swing in the neighborhood parks and plazas, and while for some that means watching a movie outdoors or taking a free fitness class, for residents and workers in the Flatiron District it also means learning different tech skills.

General Assembly, the educational institution that has offices in the Flatiron District and which offers classes on coding, digital marketing and other topics, has been working with the Flatiron Partnership for the last four summers to bring some of their individual classes to the public. Flatiron BID/Partnership executive director Jennifer Brown said that all of the courses made available are all courses that General Assembly offers, but the BID works with GA to figure out what will be best for public programming.

“We talk with them about what would make sense for the broader community and what would make most sense for the broadest audience,” she said. “Digital marketing is something people in different industries can use, and the class on freelancers and startups can appeal to lots of different individuals and freelancers.”

The choices seem to work, as the classes have generally been well attended.

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New Yorkers need to learn to share streets

Town & Village is proud to present “The Soapbox,” a column featuring a different voice from the neighborhood each week (space providing). All are welcome to submit columns on the topic of the author’s choice, preferably not longer than 800 words, to editor@townvillage.net.

Cyclists use the bike lane near Stuy Town  correctly, which author Susan Turchin would like to see happen more often. (Photo by Susan Turchin)

Cyclists use the bike lane near Stuy Town correctly, which author Susan Turchin would like to see happen more often. (Photo by Susan Turchin)

By Susan Turchin

We have an unspoken and somewhat unconscious agreement with each other. As pedestrians, when we step off the curb to cross the street and we have the green light, we expect and trust that traffic will stop and we will safely cross to the other side. But now, with increased bike traffic, this unspoken agreement is null and void. When our fabulous new bike lanes came into being all bets were off.

We need a crash course in how to share our streets. I have just returned from Europe, Vienna and Budapest. Two cities where bikes, pedestrians and cars share the roads with ease and respect. Bikes obey the traffic lights and actually stop when the light is red. Pedestrians do the same.  No jay-walking. No bikes going down one way street in the opposite direction. Everyone obeys the rules and everyone safely shares the streets.

Case in point. Tonight I rode my bike home from work. A pleasant evening. The right temperature and Ninth Avenue has a nice down slope so the ride was easy. But…

There were pedestrians walking in the bike path all over Ninth Avenue for no apparent reason, since the sidewalks were clear. And there were countless food delivery guys on their motorized bikes riding up Ninth Avenue in the wrong direction on the one-way street. Pedestrians were crossing the streets in the crosswalks against the red light and also jay-walking in the middle of the block crossing into the bike lane without looking or right to be there. Ringing my trusty bicycle bell did not deter them.

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