The Vanishing City… and Vanishing "CitiField" name?

by cathryn on March 30, 2009

Technically, this blog writer is on a blogging break til Monday, April 13th. Except, as you might have noted, the blogging thing sort of gets in your blood and it’s hard to stop. !

With that in mind, I write a short entry below:

I went to the second Vanishing City event Sunday afternoon at Dixon Place Theater featuring films, including the work-in-progress documentary “Vanishing New York” (20 minutes was shown) and “The Over Successful City,” and speakers discussing the changing neighborhoods of the Lower East Side, Chinatown and Bowery (largely attributed to Mayor Bloomberg‘s policies, giveaways to developers, and “rezonings” of these areas). Doris Diether, of Community Board 2 and a highly regarded Village activist and advocate, was added to the line-up at the last minute. All the speakers and audience members’ points were spot on.

I’ll try to write something about it in the near future or perhaps when I return writing new entries. I’m sure Kirby at Colonnade Row blog will write an update. I’ll link to it when he does. You can read my report back of the first event in late January here.

In the meantime, at Vanishing New York blog, Jeremiah has an interesting write up today on the new Mets Stadium and the unfortunate selling of the naming rights to CitiBank. It is now called “Citi Field” – but, as Jeremiah notes, only if we agree to call it that! He advocates boycotting the name (I agree) and taking a cue from the MTA which lists the stop as just Mets (the old stop was listed as Shea Stadium) and heretofore calling the new stadium Mets Field.

I’d read that the reason for the missing “CitiField” name on the subway stop is that CitiBank, one of the banks bailed out by our taxpayer money, would not pay the MTA to have their name listed as a subway stop – so the stop is just referred to as Mets. (That seems a bit dubious on the part of the MTA but anyway…) If you think about it, they bought the naming rights to the stadium – for $400 million – for only 20 years.

Hopefully, 20 years from now, corporate naming and selling off of everything to corporations – a la Mayor Bloomberg – will no longer be a trend.

Jeremiah recalls that the Flatiron Building was originally named the Fuller Building but people didn’t like it so it never stuck. That’s interesting, isn’t it?

Sort of like … hmmm… at Washington Square Park, the “Tisch” Fountain, perhaps? Somehow I don’t think that name will ever stick. The Tisch Family may not have realized what they were getting themselves into when they brokered that one.

See you soon –

 
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