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Empire State Building-Manhattan-NYCPhoto via Wikimedia Commons/Daniel Schwen

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The American Irish Historical Society opened its doors on 5th Avenue at 80th Street in 1897, in a Gilded Age mansion designed by architect Ogden Codman, Jr. known for co-authoring Edith Wharton’s first book, The Decoration of Houses. The society sheds light on the achievements of the Irish living in America: the motto of the organization is “That the world may know.” Located right across the street of Metropolitan Museum of Art, the mansion, which houses exhibitions, artifacts and a whole of history, opened its doors to Untapped Cities readers recently.  A follow-up tour will be offered on Saturday, August 3rd, so get your tickets soon!

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Square Diner Untapped Cities AFineLyneSquare Diner located at 33 Leonard Street

Over the past few years, we’ve seen the decline and loss of several of our favorite old New York diners. One that doesn’t seem to be struggling is the iconic Square Diner in Tribeca, busting with business inside and out. Those who live and work in Tribeca already are familiar with the tiny 1,000 square foot rectangular train-car style diner and the general public may recognize it from film and television appearances.

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Images: Atema Architecture

With a recent report noting that stormwater runoff and combined sewer overflows (CSOs) continue to pose challenges to New York City’s efforts to clean its waterways, it was timely that architect Ate Atema presented one strategy – the creation of “Street Creeks” – that could help address these problems at last week’s “Cities for Tomorrow” conference hosted by the New York Times.

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Red Hook Grain Terminal-Brooklyn-NYC-Untapped Cities

This article is by Jack Kelly, the author of Heaven’s Ditch: God, Gold, and Murder on the Erie Canal (St. Martin’s Press), a lively account of the canal and the many excitement generated along its banks that was published in July.

It’s no exaggeration to say that the Erie Canal made the Big Apple. In the early decades of the nineteenth century, a number of cities were competing to be the nation’s greatest port and commercial center. That honor depended on tapping the abundant supply of grain, lumber and other resources of the vast Middle West. The audacious, 360-mile waterway that New York State built between 1817 and 1825 solidified New York’s claim, pushing the city ahead of New Orleans, Baltimore and Philadelphia. Today, signs of that great project are scattered around New York, although the city itself is the greatest symbol of the canal’s phenomenal success.

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Radio Row-Cortlandt Street-Manhattan-NYCPhoto via NYPL

Here’s what we’re reading at the Untapped HQ: 

Today’s top articles: