Posts by matthewwalter:

Barretto Point Park-Hunts Point-The Bronx-Floating Pool-NYC-3Photo by Malcolm Pinckney via NYC Parks

Among New York City’s 520 miles of coastline and far from the hordes of people that crowd New York’s more popular beaches are a host of lesser known parks offering waterfront access, panoramic views, and even natural wildlife discovery. The city published a map of all of New York’s public waterfront space, but we’ve picked out some of the most interesting from each of the five boroughs. Check them out!


Image via Steve Wheeen

East Londoner Steve Wheen is on a mission to transform the potholes in his neighborhood into miniature works of art. Wheen fills in the cracks with flowers, places miniature furniture next to the plantings, photographs the newly created scene, and posts the photos to his website. His creations are tiny and could easily go unnoticed by a passerby, yet they have quickly inspired people around the world to imitate his guerrilla gardening technique.



Have you ever walked by a particularly strong stench at a street corner and suddenly had the urge to give it a closer smell to really dissect its nuances? Well, us neither. But a few brave pioneers have taken it upon themselves to create their own smellmaps, fascinating guides that showcase a city’s range of olfactory experiences. In this interactive New York Times map of Manhattan (from 2009 but still awesome), Jason Logan provides encyclopedic entries for each neighborhood’s smellscape.


There is something magical about finding a place in Central Park where you can look all around you and not see any buildings poking above the treetops. It’s as if you’ve found a portal in the middle of the country’s biggest city. Such spots are surprisingly rare because of how narrow Central Park is and the height of its surrounding buildings, but they can definitely be found. We’ve listed seven of our favorites below. If you know of any others, feel free to add them to the interactive map above or leave a comment on the post!

1. The Loch

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Just below the Pool is a charming little manmade waterfall that flows into the Loch, which winds its way northward through a ravine. The Lochs course presents multiple opportunities for building-less spots because of its low elevation and overhead vegetation. Apparently we weren’t the only ones who enjoyed the scenery; you can make out a man painting the landscape on the far right of the above panorama.


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Will Nunziata’s recent judgmental map of Williamsburg is the latest attempt at breaking down NYC’s neighborhoods into as many generalizations as possible while offending/making us laugh. We covered a city-wide judgmental map a few months ago and a Manhattan version before that, but what makes Nunziata’s latest work so memorable is its glorious, block-by-block level detail. No corner of the neighborhood is spared from his hilarious set of labels. Even an “odd smell” at the corner of Humboldt and Skillman Avenue is pointed out (although one commenter insists the smell is in fact at Humboldt and Conselyea).



For many shoppers, the frozen food aisle is the place to go for cheap TV dinners and boxed pizzas, to be reheated on nights when the effort to cook or go out is too great. But at Babeth’s Feast, frozen food is given a gourmet makeover. In fact, the store pretty much only sells frozen foods, for the most part. The Upper East Side location opened about a month ago and is essentially one big frozen food aisle–but don’t expect to find any Stouffer’s microwavable meals lining the walls. Spinach and goat cheese quiche, bacon-wrapped scallops, and lobster wellington are just a some of the available options that require nothing more than a little time in the oven to prepare. (more…)