Leaving New York

In less than two weeks I will be leaving New York City to start the next phase of my career in Singapore.  Besides spending most of my time packing and preparing, I have had sometime to reflect upon my last two years in New York.  There are certainly many people who I will miss in this great city, but there are also many elements of the city that I know can not be recreated anywhere else.  While some of these things have developed organically, others are the result of active urban planning policies. Below is a list of some of my favorite things that I will miss about New York.

The Art & Musicians of NYC’s Subway   I looked forward to two things during my commute to and from NYU each week: seeing the fish mosaic at Delancey and Essex Street and listening to jazz on Thursday nights after class at the Broadway and Lafayette platform.  Many people know that the MTA installed many mosaic through its Arts for Transit Program in the 1980’s.  Few realize though that the MTA also works with musicians that perform in train and subway stations through Music Under New York.   Of course not every musician on a subway platform is part of the program, but the MTA does have a schedule of the musicians they organize.  There is also a NYC Subway Art Guide available.

by vmax137 @ flickr

Fish Mosaic at the Delancey and Essex St. Stop by vmax137 @ flickr

"Carrying On" at Prince St by Janet Zweig

Tom Otterness's "Life Underground" Statues at 14th St & 8th Ave. by lrumiha @ flick

Jazz Musicians at Broadway & Lafayette by AJENT.MSG @ flickr

Waterfront Parks   I have had the opportunity to live near two different waterfront parks over the last two years.  Both are relatively new and part of the City’s waterfront plans.  On March 14th, 2011, Mayor Bloomberg announced the release of Vision 2020 NYC’s Comprehensive Waterfront Plan,a 10-year vision for the future of city’s 520 miles of shoreline. The plan provides a framework for not only designing parks that make the waterfront more sustainable, but also water transportation and economic development projects along the water.  I love the idea that one day Manhattan’s waterfront could be one completely connect park under this plan.  Here are photos of two of my favorite parks:

The Brooklyn Bridge Park by M Viljoen @ flickr

The Hudson River Park by Don Juan Tenorio @ flickr

Food   Few other cities in the world can live up to New York’s broad array of cuisines and its passion for food (except for maybe Singapore).  Besides amazing restaurants New York  also has a thriving food truck industry that has been bringing causal, cheap, delicious, and often specialty food to the masses. The NYC Food Truck Association works as an advocate on behalf of twenty-two premium food truck vendors to help negotiate fair laws about food vending. Although a law from the 1950’s forbids food trucks at public metered spaces, it has been very loosely interpenetrated until recently (read more about food trucks being shooed out of Midtown this week).  Don’t fear though Adrian Benepe, the NYC parks commissioner, has been recruiting dozens of the City’s most popular trucks to legally operate in City Parks. One of these new locations is the Lot under the Highline at 30th St.  Here are a few of the food trucks I love:

Mud Coffee Truck at Astor Place by stribs @ flickr

"The Lot" Under the Highline at 30th Street by Kiersten & Sumin @ flickr

Van Leeuwen Ice Cream Truck by xymox @ flickr

– Melissa



  1. Becky Reese

    Wonderful acticle! New York will miss you. On to a new chapter in your life.
    Love Mom

  2. Jenna

    I’m moving back to FL and so have been similarly reflecting so this post was quite timely for me as well. Congratulations and good luck with what’s next!

  3. Pingback: An Update From the Field: Singapore a Creative City | Encountering Urbanization

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