In the News: Time Limit Proposed for Sidewalk Sheds

••• “Late last year City Councilman Ben Kallos sponsored a bill to stop the scourge [of sidewalk sheds] and last week a hearing was finally held to discuss it. His bill would compel landlords to remove sheds—which Kallos called ‘the house guest that never leaves’—if no work is done on the building for seven days, with exceptions for weather and other issues.” Something should be done but seven days is absurdly little time; maybe that’s just an opening gambit. The article also notes that the shed outside 280 Broadway, home to the city’s Department of Buildings, has been there since 2008. “‘Thankfully, work has commenced as of a few months ago,’ Patrick Wehle, an assistant buildings commissioner, said at a City Council hearing last week.”—Crain’s

••• Mission Ceviche is opening at Canal Street Market, and it has plans to open in FiDi. —New York Post

••• Thefts and a slashing on the Tribeca Trib‘s police blotter.

••• New York magazine profiles rapper Cardi B, who was a cashier at the Amish Market in Tribeca, before “her manager suggested she might make more money across the street stripping at New York Dolls.” Might? That’s a real vote of confidence. Anyway, good for her—seriously—but am I the only person on earth who finds her hit “Bodak Yellow” totally joyless? I’ve had more fun on an escalator.



  1. Absolutely there should be a time limit on the sheds. I recall a shed that was up in the East Village for more than 10 years!

    As for “Cardi B”…no, thank you. She’s a real class act.

  2. Eric, Bodak Yellow is great fun!!!

    So nice to see someone from the neighborhood made it so big.

    • Does working in the neighborhood count the same way? The talented young woman grew up in The Bronx and commuted to the Amish Market to work…….Now with the money she is making she might be able to buy a little something something in Tribeca…but at heart she is a Bronxite.

  3. In FiDi we’ve got sheds that go up and remain up for years and years. Some beyond a decade now.

    Speaking with some building managers I know that they use the sheds as a way to not do the work and be in compliance with repairs that would be required but having the shed in place allows them an excuse. In short, it is cheaper to put up the shed and do nothing and they know it.

    The requirement should be that the date of installation should be required to be posted clearly and in large letters on all sheds so we can collectively see that a shed that seems like its been in place for a while has indeed been there for years. I would expect a longer window of delayed work than 7 days but more than one month should be questioned.

    I suspect that the companies that install sheds are very happy with the windfall of collecting years of rent while doing nothing. Nice way to make money.

    The rest of us have to dodge bike delivery people who duck under them and drive along at full speed, scattering everyone in their path for years. Not to mention the smell that can be offensive from the dog walkers allowing the wood to collect years of markings, and the surprise homeless person hiding in the shadows ready to scream at the top of their lungs for seemingly no good reason.

    It’s well past time we confront the lack of action on this subject. Good for Ben Kellos for getting on board. Our own city councilperson seems rather indifferent to this issue as she is in every other FiDi issue.

  4. Former NY State Senator Daniel Squadron also introduced similar legislation in Albany last year after hearing complaints from the Tribeca Alliance Partnership ( which represents local small businesses in Tribeca and where I serve as Community Liaison ). Businesses typically drop off by 25% as soon as a scaffold goes up in front of their stores. And they often have no say on signage telling people where there stores are behind all that metal.

    • Here is the relevant 2014 Building Code on temporary signage and sidewalk sheds.

      3301.10 Obscured lawful signs.

      When a protective structure is constructed in accordance with Section 3307, a temporary sign may be posted on such protective structure when the structure is adjacent to any building and obscures from view a lawful and existing sign. The temporary sign shall comply with the following requirements:

      1. The temporary sign shall be securely fastened to the face of the protective structure at a location directly in front of such business storefront;

      2. No projecting temporary signs shall be permitted, and all temporary signs shall be limited to a maximum height of 4 feet (1219 mm), and when affixed to a sidewalk shed, shall not project above the parapet;

      3. No temporary signs shall be permitted on the ends of any protective structure, unless the lawful and existing sign would otherwise be obscured from view by a deck or parapet of a sidewalk shed or bridge; and

      4. No temporary signs shall project below the deck of any sidewalk shed.