simple is beautiful
New York Daily Photo: Little Comforts
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Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Little Comforts

The longer you live in this city, the more you begin to appreciate the comforts that others have and take for granted - being able to drive places and park easily at your destination or doing laundry in your home (not that many of these comforts can't be had in the city, given the will and substantial money.) In time, even the little things start to become a treat, especially the unexpected - free gift wrapping of a package, delivery, a bike path, a dog run, or an unoccupied park bench on a sunny day.
New York is a city of walkers - if you don't like walking, this is not the best place to live or visit. Walking is nearly always the most reliable mode of transportation - rarely fraught with delays, traffic, rerouting or any other myriad of problems with subways, buses or cars. And for most New Yorkers, walking is an enjoyable activity in itself, with all there is to see in the vibrant, constantly changing landscape of this city. Of course, the biggest downside is braving the elements, particularly the unexpected, like getting caught in a rainstorm with no umbrella. At these times, a welcome comfort to the walker is a little shelter - an overhang, canopy or pergola.
So what better little comfort can one imagine than an enclosed pedestrian walkway (a.k.a. skyway or sky bridge) between buildings. I was startled at the sight of two while walking along Lexington Avenue and peering westward down 24th Street. It was a photo begging to be taken.
I think if I worked in either of those buildings and could find reasonable excuses, I would pass through that little skyway as often as possible, particularly on a cold and rainy day, admiring the views and fully enjoying the little comfort of not having to step outside or grab an umbrella :)

NOTE ABOUT THE BUILDINGS AND PHOTO: The closer of the two skyways in the photo connects the 10th floor of the 1 Madison Avenue (on the left) to the 8th floor of 11 Madison Avenue (right). One Madison Ave is home to the Metropolitan Life Insurance Tower - previous posting here. Credit Suisse First Boston occupies the office spaces that this walkway connects.
The second walkway in the background connects the buildings at 200 Fifth Avenue (left) and 1107 Broadway (right). These were formerly known as the Toy Center Buildings and served as offices for toy manufacturers - the American International Toy Fair has taken place there since the early 1900s. The buildings were recently sold (1107 Broadway is being converted to residential condos). The treed space in the center, separating the pairs of buildings, is Madison Square Park.


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