Neighborhood Chatter

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Compiled by Nora Bosworth andNaomi Cohen City Approves East Village Landmark District Neighborhood preservation groups secured a victory on Tuesday, Oct. 9, when the New York City Landmarks Preservation Society voted to approve the Lower East Side/East Village Historic District. The district includes 330 buildings and covers parts of the 15 blocks between Avenue A and the Bowery, and between St. Mark's Place and Second Street in the southwest corner of the East Village. Local groups have been clamoring for such protections for years now, under mounting pressure from developers. The president of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation, Andrew Berman, lauded the approval, saying, "This neighborhood has been a mecca for artists, immigrants and innovators for the past two centuries. That proud and dynamic history not only shaped New York, but our nation and the world. Too much has been lost of late in the East Village to new high-rise dorms, hotels and luxury condos." Wall Street Collectors Bourse The Wall Street Collectors Bourse returns for its second year at the Museum of American Finance from Thursday, Oct. 18, through Saturday, Oct. 20. The show, this year titled "Memorabilia of Finance," includes items such as stock and bond certificates, autographs, medals, bank notes and coins, connecting them to historic events. In addition, there will be the "Inaugural Anniversary Celebration of Important Global Companies." Some leading companies celebrating their anniversaries this year will offer objects or services connecting themselves with the news of the day-reminding the audience that their anniversaries are important on a larger historical scale. Stuyvesant High School is scheduled to open the show with a ribbon-cutting on Thursday morning, and on Friday two important numismatic organizations will hold special events for their members at the Bourse. The featured speaker for Friday's dinner at historic India House will be the prominent Belgian auctioneer and dealer Mario Boone. The auction, by Archives International Auctions, will be on Saturday, Oct. 20, in the gallery of the Museum of American Finance. The Museum is free during the Bourse events. For more information, visit Léman Prep School Hosts Compost Sale to Benefit Feeding Children Everywhere On Oct. 3, Léman Prep hosted a fundraiser for "Feeding Children Everywhere," a charity devoted to getting healthy meals to hungry children across the world. The school raised money through selling handmade compost, comprised of food scraps and other cafeteria leftovers, which the students have been storing in containers on Léman's roof since September. The bundles of nutrient-rich compost cost from $5 to $15. Each parcel came with a packet of seeds, promoting sustainability and giving the compost a purpose even for those not used to gardening. Léman Prep is part of the Meritas family of institutions, which has sister schools throughout Latin America, Asia and Europe. Accordingly, Léman strives to make its students "see beyond the Manhattan harbor and engage in a conversation with others around the world." Mayor Announces Huge Gun Bust in Manhattan One hundred firearms were seized and 16 gun traffickers indicted in what amounted to one of Manhattan's biggest gun busts in the last five years, Mayor Bloomberg, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance and Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly announced last Friday. The confiscations came after two ongoing undercover police investigations in East Harlem. In both cases, undercover detectives purchased dozens of weapons from illegal sources. At least 10 of the sold guns were reportedly bought in South Carolina and smuggled up to New York. "This investigation illustrates both the problem of illegal guns being purchased in other states and brought here illegally, and the skill and dedication of the NYPD officers who take the guns off the street, often at great risk to themselves," Bloomberg said at a press conference. "There have been 127 shooting incidents this year in Manhattan, with 152 victims," District Attorney Vance added in a statement. "Gun traffickers are bringing violence to our neighborhoods by selling illegal firearms-they are at the root of the problem of gun violence in this city." City Council Approves Seward Park Project The Seward Park Redevelopment Project (SPURA) was approved last Thursday in a unanimous decision, to the delight of Community Board members, council members and many residents of the Lower East Side. The project will convert 1.65 million square feet of vacant city land into a space with commercial and community facilities, and 1,000 housing units, many of which will be permanent, affordable housing. Councilwoman Margaret Chin, who spearheaded the modification of the City Planning Commission's original proposal, said, "Today's vote to approve development of the SPURA site is truly history in the making." The project has many provisions that would benefit local and low-income families.

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