Water main break disrupts L train service

Feb26 L Train

By Sabina Mollot

A water main break in Chelsea caused L train service to be disrupted on Wednesday morning as crews worked to stop the flooding.

According to the Department of Environmental Protection, the 20-inch pipe located at Seventh Avenue between 14th and 15th Street burst at around 5:35 a.m. The water was later shut off though, stopping the leak, though not before some flooding in the subway. As of 9:30 a.m., crews were still working to excavate the roadway and repair the main though 14th Street was reopened to traffic.

As of 9:15 a.m., there was still no L train service between Union Square and Eighth Avenue, though otherwise L trains were still running every six minutes, the MTA said.

Still, the agency warned, “Expect delays in both directions” and suggested taking the M14 bus instead.

On its website, the MTA said water had stopped flowing into the tunnel, and crews were still busy clearing water and debris, and inspecting all affected switch and signal equipment. “We are working hard to restore full service by the afternoon rush,” the agency said.

L train updates have been posted online.

Update at 4:30 p.m.: A spokesperson for the DEP says a new valve has been installed and water service restored to 15th Street between 6th and 7th Avenues.  Work continues to repair the main and restore water service to a building on corner of 14th Street and 7th Avenue, which is home to about 450 people. Work was still ongoing to resurface western lanes of Seventh Avenue though they were expected to reopen within the hour.

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Union Square Partnership seeking suggestions on how to improve the area

People in attendance at the forum discuss ideas. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The Union Square Partnership launched an initiative at the end of last year to solicit ideas from area residents and business owners about how to improve the neighborhood.

The Partnership announced the new project earlier last year and held “pop-up listening sessions” for two months in the district during the fall but began the community planning process with a forum at the end of November at the 14th Street Y, inviting neighbors to get involved in discussions with representatives from Marvel Architects, the firm that will be designing the final plans.

Although the neighborhood specifically around 14th Street might not be experiencing as much change as originally anticipated with the supposed cancellation of the L train shutdown, this project from the Partnership was intended to look beyond the next few years and focus on long-term goals beyond whatever changes the neighborhood will face during the construction on the L train.

“We have money to spend on the community so what we want to know is what types of investments we can make to make the neighborhood better in terms of sustainability,” said Jennifer Falk, executive director of the Partnership.

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Cops on lookout for subway groper at Union Square

Forcible touching suspect

Cops are looking for a man who grabbed a woman’s behind on a southbound 4 train on Friday, January 4. It was around 8:40 a.m. when, as the train was leaving Union Square, the man groped the 37-year-old victim. She managed to get a photo of the suspect on her phone before she got off the train at the Brooklyn Bridge station. The suspect remained on the train.

He is described as being black, 60 to 65 years old and 5’8″ to 5’9″ tall. He was last seen wearing a gray knit cap, a dark, colored hooded sweater and a green jacket.

Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the CrimeStoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com, on Twitter @NYPDTips or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Police Watch: Man arrested after fatal car wreck, Teens assault officer at ACS

MAN ARRESTED AT BELLEVUE AFTER FATAL CAR WRECK
Police arrested 37-year-old Sherman Harrison for alleged manslaughter inside Bellevue Hospital at 462 First Avenue on Saturday after police said that he attempted to flee the scene of a fatal car accident earlier that day.

Police brought Harrison to the hospital after an accident that took place on Saturday, December 29 at 7:23 a.m. at the corner of West and Laight Street in Tribeca. An investigation found that he allegedly attempted to walk away from a car crash in which another driver was killed. Police said that Harrison was driving when he lost control and slammed into another car, causing a crash that left the other driver dead. Responding officers also allegedly recovered a .40 caliber magazine in plain sight inside the car. Harrison was charged with manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident at 5 p.m. on Saturday.

TEENS ASSAULT OFFICER IN BRAWL AT ACS
Police arrested three teenagers for assault of a peace officer inside the ACS facility at 492 First Avenue on Saturday, December 29 at 2 a.m. Police said that the teens were kicking and banging on the building’s door, so an ACS sergeant tried to escort the teens out of the building when they reportedly became physically aggressive. The sergeant reportedly tried to restrain the teens when a brawl broke out and he was punched and kicked in the head by all three of the teenagers. The sergeant received a bruise on his head as a result of the assault.

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Last minute gifts for less than $50 found at Union Sq. Holiday Market

One-of-a-kind leather-bound journals (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

With Christmas now days away, those who have yet to finish their gift shopping — or start — needn’t panic.

Quality gifts aplenty can be found at The Union Square Holiday Market, which, each year, features goods from around 150 vendors at the southern end of the park. Town & Village recently wandered around in search of last-minute gift ideas and found a bunch, all for $50 or less.

Journals with covers made of leather or wood

New company Bora Ninova (created by one of the three brothers behind Bora Jewelry, a longtime market vendor) makes one-of-a-kind journals, manufactured in Turkey. The covers are made from either wrought leather in rich colors or thin wooden panels with etched drawings and are all priced between $20-$45.

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Cops on lookout for L train masturbator

Dec13 public lewdness

Public lewdness suspect

Police are looking for a man who was seen masturbating on an L train at Union Square on Monday, December 3.

The victim, a 29-year-old woman, said that it occurred at around 12:45 p.m. as the man stood close to where she was. The victim snapped a photo of the suspect before she left the train at the next station.

The suspect is described as white and 25-35 years-old, and was last seen wearing all dark clothing.

Anyone with information in regard to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crimestoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com, on Twitter @NYPDTips or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

 

Police Watch: Man charged with Union Square assault, Woman punched on East 22nd

MAN CHARGED WITH ASSAULT OF WOMAN IN UNION SQUARE
Police arrested 25-year-old Gage Quinones for an alleged assault in front of 24 Union Square East on Wednesday, November 7. The victim told police that after she smoked meth with Quinones that morning, they got into an argument that escalated into a fight when Quinones allegedly punched her in the mouth, causing a cut on her bottom lip. Quinones was also charged with criminal contempt.

Quinones has been arrested multiple times within the 13th Precinct, usually in or around Union Square, in the last few years. He was charged with assault in 2016 after police said that he hit a man in the back of the head with a brick, breaking four bones. He also allegedly mugged someone in Union Square in 2014 and assaulted someone with a bike lock in the park this past June.

MAN ALLEGEDLY PUNCHES WOMAN ON EAST 22ND STREET
Police arrested 38-year-old Rashawn Duran for an alleged assault in front of 33 East 22nd Street on Sunday, November 11 at 11:04 a.m. The victim told police that she was walking down the sidewalk when Duran allegedly punched her in the face, causing swelling and bruising. The victim said that there was no previous altercation between them before the alleged assault. Duran was stopped in front of 29 East 22nd Street and the victim and a witness positively identified him. The victim was treated on the scene and removed to Bellevue Hospital.

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Police Watch: Man arrested for filming woman in bathroom, Student arrested for releasing sex tape

MAN ALLEGEDLY FILMED WOMAN IN UNION SQUARE BATHROOM
Police arrested 28-year-old Olubenga Adesanya for allegedly filming a woman while she was inside a bathroom stall in the restroom inside the Union Square subway station on Tuesday, July 10 at 2:30 p.m. The woman told police that she went into the bathroom and when she got into the stall, noticed that there was a cell phone camera lens pointed down at her and she could see a person’s feet under the bottom of the stall. When she walked out of the bathroom, she reportedly saw Adesanya in the stall and confronted him outside the restroom, but he wasn’t arrested at the time. Police said that Adesanya turned himself in to officers at Transit District 4 at the corner of East 14th Street and Union Square East on Wednesday, October 31 at 7:15 p.m. because he saw himself on a wanted flyer. He was charged with obscene material.

SCHOOL OF THE FUTURE STUDENT ARRESTED FOR SENDING SEX TAPE TO FRIENDS
Police arrested a teenager for promoting a sexual performance by a child and aggravated harassment after he leaked a video on Tuesday, October 9 of him and his ex-girlfriend having sex. The victim told police that the suspect released the video while they were in the School of the Future at 127 East 22nd Street where they are both students, and that he sent the video to his friends because the victim broke up with him. The victim told police that she was aware of the video but didn’t authorize the suspect to share it with his friends. The teen was arrested on Tuesday, October 30 at 9:35 p.m. inside the 13th Precinct. His name is being withheld due to his young age.

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Haunted subway in Union Square

Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

As if the subway weren’t scary enough on a daily basis, the NYPD created a family-friendly haunted house inside the Union Square subway station earlier this month. The enclosed structure was set up in the station’s underground hallway near the 15th Street exit.

Officers for Transit District 4, which is located within the Union Square station, dressed in costume to hand out cotton candy and other treats to kids. Despite the real-life nightmare of commuting, the haunted house proved popular, with crowds lined through the station on Thursday afternoon in the midst of the evening commute, waiting to get inside.

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Harvest in the Square raises $430G for Union Square Park

Tim Meyers, chef at Bocce USQ (at left) at Harvest in the Square (Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Harvest in the Square, the annual food festival that serves as a fundraiser for Union Square Park, raised $430,000 at this year’s event, topping last year’s fundraising amount of $368,000.

Union Square Partnership executive director Jennifer Falk said that a portion of the money raised always goes to programming in the park, such as free community programs through summer in the square, as well as landscaping of park and plazas and capital work to make repairs.

The Partnership will work with the Parks Department over the winter to develop ideas for what the park needs and work on whatever project is chosen will begin next April. The money raised through last year’s Harvest in the Square was used to build out brand new seating area just south of where the mother and child fountain is on the west side of the park between 15th and 16th Streets. The Partnership said that in the last 23 years, the event has raised a total of $6.7 million.

Falk noted that a significant portion of the money from last year was used to replace equipment in the playgrounds and to replace some of the park lighting with LED energy.

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Police Watch: Man arrested for punching women, Woman accused of stealing purse

JOHN DOE ARRESTED FOR PUNCHING WOMEN
Police arrested a 19-year-old John Doe for an assault that took place at the corner of Third Avenue and East 17th Street on Thursday, October 4 at 6:14 p.m. The victim told police that she was walking west on East 17th Street when the suspect walked up to her and punched her in the face without provocation. A witness told police that the man had punched another woman in the face as well but that victim was not at the scene by the time police arrived. The victim told police that she had pain on her upper lip and redness on her palm from when she fell on the ground. The suspect was referred to as a John Doe by police because he had no ID when arrested.

WOMAN ACCUSED OF STEALING PURSE AT PARK
Police arrested 38-year-old Dominique Eligin for an alleged theft from the corner of Madison Avenue and East 26th Street on Tuesday, October 2 at 12:48 p.m. Police said that Eligin grabbed the victim’s purse from a bench along the park and fled east on East 26th Street towards Park Avenue South, but the victim caught up with her and allegedly recovered the property from inside her backpack. Eligin was charged with grand larceny, possession of stolen property and possession of a controlled substance.

MAN BUSTED FOR EQUINOX BURGLARY
Police arrested 50-year-old William Clanton for an alleged burglary from the Equinox at 315 Park Avenue South during the overnight hours of September 8. Police said that Clanton forced open the door to the gym at 2 a.m. and allegedly stole clothing and electronics. Clanton was arrested for burglary and theft inside the 13th Precinct on Wednesday, October 3 at 9:15 a.m.

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Animals find homes at Adoptapalooza in Union Square Park

By Maya Rader

Two-legged and four-legged patrons alike flocked to Union Square on Sunday afternoon for the pet-adoption extravaganza, Adoptapalooza. Hosted by the NYC Mayor’s Alliance for Animals, the event offered over 500 adoptable dogs, cats and rabbits in tents lining the north side of Union Square and the neighboring Petco. For those who already had a four-pawed pal, the event boasted a free microchipping tent, dog training enclosure, and many booths with merchandise and information. Union Square was crowded with hundreds of attendees, and after a few hours, many of the cages that were once filled with adoptable pets were empty, having found new homes.

Photos by Maya Rader

Man found dead on train at Union Square

Union Square (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

A man was found dead on a train at the Union Square subway station after walking between train cars on Sunday night, police said.

The 33-year-old man, whose name has not been released, had gotten between the cars as the southbound 4 train left the 42nd Street station, but fell as the train approached 14th Street.

When police arrived at Union Square at around 10:30 p.m., the man was found inside the train, unconscious with trauma to his head. Emergency service workers took him to Mount Sinai Beth Israel, but doctors were unable to save him.

The Medical Examiner will determine the manner and cause of death and police said no criminality is suspected at this time.

New sculpture at Union Square Park built around Washington monument

“Washington 20/20/20” by artist Kenseth Armstead was installed around the monument’s pedestal. (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A new sculpture designed as a companion piece to the George Washington monument at Union Square Park was unveiled last Thursday.

The abstract, steel structure, titled “Washington 20/20/20” and created by artist Kenseth Armstead, references the 20 percent of the colonial population that were enslaved Africans, the 20,000 slaves in New York State in 1776 when Washington retreated from New York City and the 20 percent of Washington’s army that was African at Yorktown, Virginia, when he ultimately defeated the British in 1781. The piece was installed around the pedestal of the Washington monument at the park’s south end.

“This piece will spark fascinating discussions about representation, as well as racial and social justice in our country,” Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver said at the sculpture’s debut. “We are proud to count it among the thousands of public artworks exhibited in the 50-year history of Park’s public art program Art in the Parks.”

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Creep grabs six-year-old boy’s crotch at Union Square Barnes & Noble

Sept6 forcibletouching1

Forcible touching suspect

By Sabina Mollot

Cops are on the lookout for a man who groped a six-year-old boy in front of his mother at the Union Square Barnes & Noble.

Police said that on Wednesday, August 29 at 4 p.m., the man approached the victim on the second floor of the bookstore at 33 East 17th Street and grabbed his buttocks as well as his groin area. The mother caught him as he leaned in to touch the boy’s leg and his hip and when she confronted him, the man said, “I was trying to help him. I’m sorry.” He then fled the location.

The victim wasn’t injured.

Sept6 forcibletouching2

Forcible touching suspect

The suspect is described as black, 18-20 years old, about 5’8″ tall, and 170 lbs., with black hair and brown eyes. He was last observed wearing a multi-colored short-sleeved shirt, dark jeans and white sneakers.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.