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Posts by michelle young:

Articles By: michelle young

Michelle is the founder of Untapped Cities. Michelle can usually be found in New York (where she grew up), Paris, backpacking in South America or Southeast Asia, or in-transit between. She’s traveled to 40+ countries, has an obsession with buses and shoots with a Canon SLR camera. She is an author of 100 Ways to Make History, published by the New York Public Library and is currently working on a book on the history of Broadway for Arcadia. She holds a masters in urban planning from Columbia University, where she is an adjunct professor, a B.A. from Harvard in the History of Art & Architecture, and is a graduate of the Juilliard School of Music. Follow her on Twitter @untappedmich.


Dublin-Street Art-Ban Fur Farms-PETA-Ireland-UK

PETA has been leveraging the power of street art recently, particularly in the United Kingdom. After chicken feet starting appearing all over London by New York City street artist Dan Witz, the latest is a guerrilla installation of donated furs, adapted into animal shapes around Dublin. This installation is by street artist Solus using fur coats from those who have changed their mind about the fur industry. Accompanying each piece is a sticker that leads to BanFurFarms.net, where they can join a growing list of over 30,000 people calling on Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine to ban fur farms. Says Solus, “Re-shaping the fur coats into animals is a way to remind us of the life it that once inhabited those garments.”

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NYC The Manhattan Bridge-Eric Rosner-IllustrationThe Manhattan Bridge under construction by Eric Rosner

You might recognize Eric Rosner‘s illustrated work from his street art on the walls of New York City. Using ink marker, Rosner has a sketch style that brings a vitality to New York City’s architecture–the buildings seem to emerge and flow upwards from the activity that one imagines was in the streets during the Gilded Age. Our knowledge of that time period, of which Rosner has a penchant for, comes from the staid, black and white vintage photography so oft-circulated. While those images are beautiful, they don’t always capture the hustle and bustle that characterized this particular era–the first skyscrapers, technological advancement, and the rise and fall of great fortunes.

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NYC Street Trees by Species-Jill Hubley-Fun Maps-Open Data-NYC.23 PM

First off, who knew there was a census for trees? The tree census takes place every ten years, with the last census in 2005 and the next one occurring this year. Jill Hubley, a web developer from Brooklyn, has put together a beautiful interactive map of New York City’s tree distribution, based on the 2005 census. She also filed a FOIL (Freedom of Information Law) request for the 1995 tree census, and will have the results at the end of this month. This means she’ll be able to compare the tree cover evolution in New York City over time, accounting for the city’s Million Trees Initiative, and later add this year’s results.

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Wall Street Pearl Street-Street Signs-Slave Market-NYCNYC’s Slave Market was located at what is now Wall Street and Pearl Street. Image via Flickr by bradhoc

Before stocks were traded on Wall Street, and not long after Wall Street was an actual wall to keep out British and Native American marauders, there was a slave market at the intersection of Pearl Street. As reported yesterday by WNYC, New York City government will acknowledge for the first time in history that the slave market existed, and add a historical marker to join the other 38 important sites downtown. The slave market was active between the years of 1711 and 1762 at the corner of Wall Street and Pearl Street.

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Holdout Bungalow House-Seattle-Edith MacefieldImage by Ian C. Bates for The New York Times 

This week, the famous holdout bungalow in Seattle, likened to the home in the film Up, returned to the news, with The New York Times reporting that the 600 square foot house, now surrounded by commercial buildings, was in default. Holdout houses are nothing new, but they form an emphatic visual reminder of this age-old development battle. Here, we’ve rounded up five of what we believe are some of the most impressive holdouts around the world.

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Saving Place Iwan Baan-DUMBO-Manhattan Bridge-NYC-Landmarks Law-50th Anniversary-Museum of CIty of New York ExhibitionPhoto by Iwan Baan for the Museum of the City of New York Saving Place: Fifty Years of New York City Landmarks

On April 21st at the Museum of the City of New York, the exciting new exhibition Saving Place: Fifty Years of New York City Landmarks will open, exploring how the pioneering landmarks legislation, passed in 1965, has been a key contributor to the rebirth of many New York City neighborhoods. More than just a historical recounting of the transformative law, Saving Place will look at how the impact of the landmarks law is woven into the urban fabric of the city today. Via the curation of original documents, drawings, paintings, videos, building pieces, paintings and more, the exhibition will situate history within the modern context.

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