Friday, May 30, 2008

More crane collapses

This morning, yet another crane collapsed on the job site in Manhattan, this time killing the crane operator and causing heavy damage to nearby buildings. Debris from the construction site and the crane littered the streets and caused many nearby buildings to be evacuated. The incident occurred at 354 East 91st Street (1st Avenue). This is the 2nd fatal crane collapse and 9th death in Manhattan these past 2 months, amidst growing criticism that the city and the Department of Buildings are not doing enough to secure construction sites. In March, the DOB instituted a new policy requiring that both before a crane is to be raised and during its operations, on-site workers must have meetings with city engineers. The cause of this incident has not yet been determined.

>>>View screenshots of images from Eyewitness News.
>>>NYTimes:At Least One Killed by Crane Collapse in Manhattan

Sunday, May 25, 2008


Any Venture Capitalists out there with some extra cash? I was browsing around Hong Kong Island in Google Earth the other day and found a Youtube video titled "2 Causeway Bay MTR from Hong Kong Stadium". I clicked on it and a video of someone walking from the stadium to the MTR (Hong Kong's metro) appeared. I browsed around the rest of the island and found many more videos title "2...from...". I clicked on the video and was led to, a Hong Kong-based startup. Anyone can upload a video of a walking guide from one point of interest (say, a landmark) to another (say, a MTR station entrance). The service claims to be accessible from "popular multimedia mobile devices like the iPhone or your desktop." This seems to be an interesting way to guide lost travelers, when GPS is too 'blind' to show street details and when Google Maps Street View is too impersonal.


Monday, May 19, 2008

AIDS Walk Raises Millions, Fun Time Too

The 6.2 miles (10km) walk from 59th St in Central Park, up and around it to 110th, down Riverside Drive, and back to the finish line was exhausting but fun! There were refreshments such as drinks and snacks along the way, and plenty of volunteers to help cheer everyone on! Oh, and about 45,000 other participants who helped raise $7,058,497, a record amount, for the GMHC and other organizations. It wasn't too sunny and the rain held off until sometime after I finished the walk (10:15 to 12:50). It felt great to help raise money for a good cause while seeing the city's treasures and getting a great workout. I definitely hope to be able to participate next year!

>>>AIDS Walk New York

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Congestion Pricing Gone

It really sucks that the New York State Assembly did not even gather a vote (thanks to the pain in the butt Sheldon Silver) on New York City's proposed congestion pricing plan. It won wide approval in the City Council, and would have raised hundreds of millions of dollars to help improve mass transit. It would also help plug a $17.5 billion deficit for the MTA. After this blow to the city, I found others who shared my beliefs that congestion pricing was (and still is) greatly needed in NYC. In today's polluted and high-gas priced economy, we need greater mass transit to improve all of our lives.

>>>Second Avenue Sagas | Blogging the NYC Subways