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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.


Bishop Falls-Lost Town-Ashokan Reservoir-Catskill Aqueduct-NYC Drinking Water-Drowned TownsBishop Falls, one of the lost towns in the Ashkoan Reservoir. Image via Lost Towns of the Hudson Valley

New York City has some of the best drinking water in the country, but it didn’t come without a price. Most are familiar with the Croton Aqueduct, the first to bring fresh water to the city in 1842–updated in 1890. The Catskill Aqueduct was next (a push after Brooklyn was incorporated into the City of New York), built between 1917 and 1924, bringing 40% of New York City’s water from a series of reservoirs 163 miles from upstate New York. What New Yorkers may not know is that the six reservoirs of the Catskill Aqueduct, including Ashokan Reservoir which is New York City’s largest, were formed by flooding a dozen towns.

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William Wall Clubhouse-Manhattan Yacht Club-Sailing Club-Ellis Island-Jersey City-Surf City-Statue of LIberty-004

The Honorable William Wall (aka the “Willy Wall”) is the floating clubhouse of the Manhattan Yacht Club, anchored in the New York harbor just near Ellis Island. The open air bar has incredible views of downtown Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty (and neighboring Brooklyn and New Jersey, of course). Indeed, the clubhouse was designed specifically for taking in the sailboat races and you’ll notice it is more of a viewing platform and barge rather than a sleek yacht. (We admit it was a bit cloudy yesterday, but we’ll be back to get more photos soon).

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719 Greenwich Street-Greenwich Village-Cabin on Roof-David Puchkoff and Eileen Stukane-NYCPhoto by George Steinmetz via Gothamist

We’re excited New Yorkers are finally getting behind the fascination that are rooftop cottages–could there be any better way to beat the urban jungle, while still staying in it? Yesterday, Gothamist revealed yet another–a cabin sitting in an urban meadow with a porch to take it all in. As The New York Times reported in 2006, owner David Puchkoff was inspired by a visit to Elk, Pennsylvania and just wanted a porch.

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The New York City Subway- 468 stations. 1 poster-Alex Daly & Hamish Smyth-Vignelli Standards Manual

This particular Kickstarter definitely doesn’t need more help, and that’s certainly not why we’re writing about it. But designers, transit enthusiasts, and architects are going gaga over this subway poster, inspired by the specifications of the original Standards Manual for New York City subway signage by Bob Noorda and Massimo Vignelli. Last year, this same team, successfully funded a Kickstarter to reissue The Standards Manual. Now, this poster is an affordable way to “get it into many people’s hands,” they write, with the opening price at $35.

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House on top of Apartment-Wood-13th and 3rd Avenue-Kiehls-Untapped Cities-East Village-010

Here at Untapped Cities, we’ve gone around the city documenting some of the fun suburban style houses and cottages that sit perched atop typical New York City apartments. There are two in the East Village and we’ve often wondered what they looked like inside. Now, Curbed NY has photographs inside the wooden house on 13th Street and 3rd Avenue because it’s for sale for $4.44 million–and its beautiful.

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Google Doodle-Statue of Liberty Arrives in NYC-Harbor-France-IsereOn June 17th 1885 the Statue of Liberty arrived from France in New York Harbor aboard the steamship, the Isère. Today’s Google doodle celebrates this momentous event, which 200,000 people came to see. Split into pieces and packed into crates, the Statue of Liberty actually arrived without it signature arm and torch–it came earlier and was displayed in Madison Square Park from 1876 to 1882 as a fundraising effort for the pedestal of the statue.

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