Thursday, May 31, 2012

North Moore Dreaming

I moved to Tribeca from West Broadway, SoHo, in 1999. I’m downtown, no question. North Moore St is close to the streaming Hudson River; it’s in industrial edge Manhattan territory that hadn’t been gentrified or sexed-in-the-city like Greenwich Village and Bleecker St. Only four blocks long. No South Moore. My loft had a close-up view of the Twin Towers, and my architect Sam Trimble created for me the perfect sanctuary to crawl into after hard miles on the road. JFK Junior lived in the street. Harvey Keitel was a block or so over and Ed Burns three doors away. Russell Brand has just moved in. Robert de Niro was a strong presence in the neighborhood with his Tribeca Grill, his film production offices, and various properties on the make including Nobu and the Greenwich Hotel. After 911 he became the “Mayor of TriBeCa” with the film festival leading the charge to rejunevate an area torn apart emotionally and physically.

Filmmakers talk about “geographic-specificity” – meaning that the best stories are those tightly contained in a location, in its past present and future, in its mystery, sensuality and intimacy. The New York Times got geographically specific about North Moore St in its April 19 Block by Block column: “Loading-Dock Chic on North Moore Street.”

The piece describes “the quintessential TriBeCa street, paved with cobblestones and lined with converted warehouses…North Moore looks much as it did in the late 1800s, when manufacturing – from ice to glass – took place in the five and six story warehouses that are so coveted today. Everywhere are steel loading bays, shaftways, cast-iron flourishes, canopies suspended with large-link chains and old signs carved in stone.” And while noting that it “has become one of the most seductive addresses in the city,” the Times says “TriBeCa does manage to hand on to a clandestine aura… [it] is many things, but bucolic is not one of them.”

There is a tour of the local eateries – Bubby’s scrambled egg breakfast at one end of North Moore, Andrew Carmellini’s Italian taverna Locanda Verde at the other; Mr Chow around the corner, Corton just over on West Broadway. The Harrison is a block away, and my favorite wine bar The Terrior is on the same street. There’s an original Frank Gehry interior in Issey Miyake at the southwest corner, and the iconic firehouse Hook & Ladder 8 made famous by the Ghostbusters movies.

North Moore, you’re my home and my geographically-specific Lovemark.

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