On this week’s show we will visit the twin neighborhoods of Concourse and Highbridge in the Bronx.
My guests will be expert tour guide Jeremy Wilcox, Founder and Owner of Custom NYC Tours; and Walter Puryear, Senior Director at the Andrew Freedman Home, a center for arts and artists located on the Grand Concourse.
Tonight’s show topic will revolve around the twin neighborhoods of Concourse and Highbridge in the Bronx. The first guest will be Jeremy Wilcox who is the Founder and Owner of Custom NYC Tours. Jeremey first became a tour guide about five years ago but has always gone exploring around neighborhoods with his friends. One of his friends inspired him to quit his job and follow his dreams which paid off. The first tour he gave was in the Summer of 2016. The first tour he got paid to give was of Wall Street and the World Trade Center Area. Highbridge got its name after the bridge that connects the neighborhood to Washington Heights and Manhattan. It stretches over the Harlem River.
One of Jeremy’s most famous tours is his tour of landmarks as well as his art deco and Highbridge tour. People can find out more information at NYCtours.com. Originally, the neighborhood of Concourse was not a part of the Bronx but was built up during the Great Depression which eventually helped lead to them joining. The original walkway of Concourse was finished in the early 1900’s. When the buildings went up, the first communities who inhabited the location were mostly middle class people along with Jewish people. At the beginning of this century, investors started to invest in the area. Also in 2011 a renovation took place which led to the neighborhood’s reinvention.
The second half of the show will feature a second guest named Walter Puryear who is a Senior Director at the Andrew Freedman Home which is a center for arts and artists located on the Grand Concourse. Walter has lived in New York for the majority of his life. He has lived in many different locations around the Bronx. He has been around arts and artists since he was around the age of six. He was a child actor. Next, the origin of the Andrew Freeman home is discussed. Andrew Freeman was someone who created a place to house people who were suffering through unfortunate circumstances and needed assistance. The home also has advanced medical services.
The Andrew Freeman home also makes an emphasis on trying to transform a person overall. They were already known for their workforce program that was geared towards the adults but later they expanded. Their after school and weekend programs became more art focused and the themes of the shows they were putting on were based on real world issues. Walter has helped many people who work a certain occupation use their skills in other ways they never thought possible. It is important for him to help others realize that they can create their own narratives. In addition, he will be having a small opening in September for the Redlining exhibition.
00:00:30.540 --> 00:00:39.990 Jeff Goodman: Hello everyone, welcome to our listeners in the big apple from across the US and around the world i'm Jeff Goodman, and this is rediscovering New York.
00:00:40.710 --> 00:00:47.160 Jeff Goodman: professionally i'm a real estate broker with brown Harris Stevens here in the city, but our show is not about real estate.
00:00:47.790 --> 00:00:55.230 Jeff Goodman: rediscovering New York as a weekly program celebrating New York City, its history, its texture it's five its uniqueness.
00:00:56.040 --> 00:01:05.520 Jeff Goodman: And we do it through interviews with historians local business owners nonprofit organizations preservationists local musicians and artists and the occasional elected official.
00:01:06.180 --> 00:01:13.020 Jeff Goodman: On some shows like tonight's we bring an individual New York neighborhood to life we explore its history and its current energy.
00:01:13.620 --> 00:01:22.950 Jeff Goodman: What makes that particular New York neighborhood special on some shows we showcase and interesting and vital color the city and its history that's not focused on one particular neighborhood.
00:01:23.790 --> 00:01:31.170 Jeff Goodman: Prior episodes of covering topics as diverse and illuminating is American presidents who had some relationship with New York, who came from here.
00:01:31.860 --> 00:01:39.510 Jeff Goodman: The history of women activists and the women's suffrage movement we've looked at the history of different immigrant communities, including people who were brought here and slaved.
00:01:40.050 --> 00:01:45.780 Jeff Goodman: we've looked at the history of the city's LGBT community, the gay rights movement we've explored bicycles and cycling.
00:01:46.170 --> 00:02:00.660 Jeff Goodman: punk and opera or public library systems, the subway public art or greatest train stations, some of our bridges and even some of our son despise not our I don't want to take credit for him, but spies and saboteurs who were.
00:02:01.320 --> 00:02:15.330 Jeff Goodman: based in New York during wartime and who aided our enemies after the broadcast the show is available on podcast you can find us on apple spotify Amazon podcast stitcher Google podcasts and other services.
00:02:16.050 --> 00:02:31.950 Jeff Goodman: Tonight we're going back to the bronx and we're actually doing a double show, because these neighborhoods are very much intertwined and right next to each other and i'm talking about concourse and highbridge those are right next to each other in the bronx.
00:02:33.540 --> 00:02:39.120 Jeff Goodman: Our first guest is no stranger to rediscovering New York, he is turned into a regular he's JEREMY wilcox.
00:02:39.720 --> 00:02:45.900 Jeff Goodman: JEREMY is a licensed New York City tour guide he's a New York native and he's the owner of custom nyc tours.
00:02:46.410 --> 00:02:53.640 Jeff Goodman: Is small group of private walking tours including places in the bronx focus on the cities neighborhoods its history, art and architecture.
00:02:54.300 --> 00:02:58.350 Jeff Goodman: He also serves on the board of the guides association in New York City.
00:02:58.860 --> 00:03:12.180 Jeff Goodman: that's ganache one of the oldest and most active tour guides associations in the United States, not just in New York and I always like to say, Jeremy wilcox a hearty welcome back to rediscovering New York thanks for joining us.
00:03:14.070 --> 00:03:16.350 Jeremy Wilcox: Oh, thank you for having me again always happy to be here.
00:03:16.590 --> 00:03:22.170 Jeff Goodman: it's always a pleasure to have you and your expertise and your passion germ you're originally from the city aren't you.
00:03:22.740 --> 00:03:26.190 Jeremy Wilcox: Yes, I grew up in Queens in South Richmond hill specifically.
00:03:28.050 --> 00:03:31.110 Jeff Goodman: And where do you live now in New York.
00:03:31.920 --> 00:03:35.430 Jeremy Wilcox: Currently i'm living in flatbush brooklyn, which is a wonderful place to live.
00:03:37.260 --> 00:03:45.750 Jeff Goodman: Yes, and I went to school right next to flatbush I know the neighborhood you live in well when did you decide that you would go into designing and leading tours.
00:03:46.830 --> 00:03:53.970 Jeremy Wilcox: So I became a tour guide about five years ago and but I had the idea of bubbling in my head a little bit before that I.
00:03:54.510 --> 00:04:03.330 Jeremy Wilcox: Had a series of odd jobs before this and I just found them very stifling and I used to spend my free time wandering neighborhoods and I would start dragging friends, along with me and being like.
00:04:03.600 --> 00:04:13.890 Jeremy Wilcox: Look at this neighborhood I did research on it, and I would start giving them what I later realized were tours and one of my friends who i'm very grateful to said quit the job that you hate and do the thing that you love and he was very correct.
00:04:14.820 --> 00:04:19.920 Jeff Goodman: When did you give your first tour sort of as a as a business, and not just as a hobby.
00:04:20.730 --> 00:04:25.830 Jeremy Wilcox: The first tour I gave was in the summer of 2016 so it's just a little over five years ago.
00:04:26.880 --> 00:04:28.980 Jeff Goodman: And, was it in flapper or didn't as part.
00:04:29.010 --> 00:04:38.010 Jeremy Wilcox: Of the very first tour, I was actually paid to give was a tour of lower Manhattan Wall Street in the World Trade Center area that type of tour.
00:04:39.390 --> 00:04:45.150 Jeff Goodman: Well let's go all the way up Manhattan island and cross the Harlem river into the bronx concourse in highbridge.
00:04:45.630 --> 00:04:57.930 Jeff Goodman: they're different neighborhoods but this sort of pair together you look at them on a map and they they almost look like to have have a kidney or to have such a heart the way they're sort of connected up and down up and down Jerome avenue.
00:04:58.950 --> 00:05:05.760 Jeff Goodman: Before the Dutch arrived here about 400 years ago there were local people and what would become these neighborhoods who were there.
00:05:06.630 --> 00:05:12.900 Jeremy Wilcox: So the the tribe That was really settled in that part of the bronx was the swan swan I tribe.
00:05:13.500 --> 00:05:23.130 Jeremy Wilcox: And they that was pretty much their land they called the land, specifically new Austin which meant the land between because it's you know it's the land in between these two separate little islands.
00:05:25.380 --> 00:05:35.880 Jeff Goodman: And we're there with a Dutch settlers who settled in the area or actually it was a johana bronk wasn't it who who settled the Swedish settler who settled there at some point.
00:05:36.360 --> 00:05:43.350 Jeremy Wilcox: Yes, he was really the main person who owned a big chunk of that land, so much so that, obviously, now the entire county slash borough is named after him.
00:05:43.980 --> 00:05:54.930 Jeremy Wilcox: Because it, you know now we call it bronx county butter, for a long time it was bronx county you know, like it was a possessive you know you own that much land you eventually get a county named after you.
00:05:56.040 --> 00:06:06.300 Jeff Goodman: I was on a call this morning and a native of the bronx had no it's not the bronx he said it's the bronx da and be our next for those of us old enough to remember the pronunciation.
00:06:07.230 --> 00:06:15.000 Jeff Goodman: Of the two neighborhoods we're going to talk about tonight concourse and highbridge let's look at the one that has the old name highbridge how did he get its name.
00:06:16.110 --> 00:06:30.690 Jeremy Wilcox: So highbridge is very literal it is named after probably the neighborhoods most distinctive attraction, which is the highbridge, which is a bridge that goes over the Harlem river connecting that neighborhood into Washington heights in Manhattan.
00:06:33.990 --> 00:06:40.500 Jeff Goodman: And when was the what what's on that bridge what was what was it about it, what is it about it, that was so significant.
00:06:41.310 --> 00:06:48.300 Jeremy Wilcox: So I would venture to guess most new Yorkers are not familiar at all with the highbridge, but it really is an important part of New York City history.
00:06:48.660 --> 00:06:56.670 Jeremy Wilcox: Because, in the first half of the 19th century, you know living conditions were horrific in the city people were dying of diseases left and right.
00:06:56.910 --> 00:07:06.840 Jeremy Wilcox: And one reason was stagnant water so clean water made New York City livable and the croton sort of system is what first gave reliable clean water to New York.
00:07:07.140 --> 00:07:12.120 Jeremy Wilcox: To built up a dam up in westchester county which you can still visit it's a nice little attraction up there.
00:07:12.390 --> 00:07:19.230 Jeremy Wilcox: And they flowed the water down through westchester into the bronx but then they needed a way for it to get obviously over to Manhattan.
00:07:19.590 --> 00:07:29.070 Jeremy Wilcox: Rather than expensive and dangerous tunneling, a decision was made to send the pipes flowing over a bridge and rather than a low bridge they decided on highbridge.
00:07:29.580 --> 00:07:44.160 Jeremy Wilcox: That would literally directly connect the upper hills of Washington heights to the upper hills of the hybrid area and bring the water flowing into Manhattan and then connecting continuing to flow down through a series of reservoirs to homes within Manhattan.
00:07:44.760 --> 00:07:47.280 Jeff Goodman: And when did the water start flowing it was 1841 or.
00:07:47.280 --> 00:07:55.950 Jeremy Wilcox: 218 42, which was also the same year that the famous croton reservoir was completed in midtown Manhattan now the site of the main branch of the New York.
00:07:55.950 --> 00:07:56.730 Jeremy Wilcox: public library.
00:07:57.210 --> 00:08:02.100 Jeff Goodman: When did construction on the bridge start, I was it's offense it's an unbelievable beautiful bridge and.
00:08:02.700 --> 00:08:07.650 Jeff Goodman: It actually was a little bit more of a beautiful bridge in the old days when they had all of those brick arches but.
00:08:08.220 --> 00:08:13.770 Jeff Goodman: With shipping around the island they've actually replace some of those I don't know what year it was, but with the steel.
00:08:14.460 --> 00:08:22.530 Jeff Goodman: With it with a big steel arch, which is also quite beautiful but those arches was something that spanned the whole the whole length of the bridge When did they start construction on it.
00:08:23.160 --> 00:08:32.610 Jeremy Wilcox: So construction started in 1837 and was fully completed in 1848 just about 11 years later, we had originally was just beautiful stone arch.
00:08:33.270 --> 00:08:45.660 Jeremy Wilcox: You know just an absolutely grand structure that you know among the architects and engineers who worked on it was James renwick jr who is most famous for doing buildings like grace church and St patrick's cathedral.
00:08:47.340 --> 00:08:49.530 Jeff Goodman: I didn't realize that he had worked on that as well well.
00:08:51.090 --> 00:08:55.230 Jeff Goodman: And when was there always a walkway over highbridge or was that added later on.
00:08:55.830 --> 00:09:06.630 Jeremy Wilcox: know that the the walkway was not added until 1864 originally when the bridge was completed it was really just strictly functional was just moving the water, you know from one.
00:09:07.020 --> 00:09:16.320 Jeremy Wilcox: county to the other, and then they realized that it would be great way to get people again from that part of the bronx to that part of that so 1864 the walkway was built.
00:09:17.130 --> 00:09:20.580 Jeff Goodman: To they ever let horse traffic on or was it was a strictly for pedestrians.
00:09:21.330 --> 00:09:31.410 Jeremy Wilcox: My understanding it was would have been strictly for pedestrians for strolling I think you know they didn't want things that would potentially affect the structural integrity of the bridge.
00:09:32.040 --> 00:09:43.290 Jeff Goodman: When the bridge was opened in the 1840s for water, what was the area like on the bronx side of the Harlem river was there any were there any any structures were there any residences there at that time.
00:09:44.040 --> 00:09:56.370 Jeremy Wilcox: yeah there was a small amount, because you know the beautiful views, and you know you were up on those cliffs it was a great kind of retreat for the wealthy people they had built homes right on the edge overlooking the Harlem river.
00:09:57.000 --> 00:10:12.990 Jeremy Wilcox: Particularly before clean water wealthy people like to live up you know, in the heights brooklyn heights, you know as another example because the air was higher was cleaner so yeah it was kind of like a, I guess, a country suburban retreat for wealthy people living in that county and.
00:10:13.920 --> 00:10:21.270 Jeff Goodman: The train go up there yet to do the Harlem one go up there, I wonder how people would have traveled up there was it just would have been by by stage coach or wagon.
00:10:21.750 --> 00:10:25.800 Jeremy Wilcox: It would have been a mix of both I mean the New York central lines did.
00:10:25.890 --> 00:10:33.660 Jeremy Wilcox: Did run up there by that time so that you would have been able to get you know, take the old vanderbilt lines up there before the subway came.
00:10:34.740 --> 00:10:44.760 Jeff Goodman: When would we begin to see the kind of residential development that there is that there is today when when did that construction began.
00:10:45.870 --> 00:10:54.810 Jeremy Wilcox: So largely would have begin, I mean there were some developments in the late 19th century, but really not until the early 20th century when the irt subway arrived there.
00:10:55.260 --> 00:11:01.650 Jeremy Wilcox: The first irt subway line arrived there in 1906 you know now part of the the four line.
00:11:02.190 --> 00:11:09.690 Jeremy Wilcox: If you're taking the train up to Yankee stadium you're familiar with the line so yeah right after the subway came, I mean that in a lot of the city, the subway is what.
00:11:10.110 --> 00:11:19.680 Jeremy Wilcox: Be get development because now, you had a more reliable and cost efficient way for people to get from those areas to the kind of job Center in Manhattan.
00:11:21.480 --> 00:11:32.040 Jeff Goodman: You know, one of the things that I find really interesting and almost unique about highbridge is that when you drive around those streets it's hard to walk around it, because there's so really.
00:11:33.180 --> 00:11:42.180 Jeff Goodman: It reminds you a little more of San Francisco than it does in New York, not that the streets of the boulevards of whiting in highbridge but just this this this changing.
00:11:43.650 --> 00:11:45.660 Jeff Goodman: elevate elevation from one street to another.
00:11:46.290 --> 00:11:47.160 Jeff Goodman: yeah once you submit it.
00:11:47.490 --> 00:11:49.830 Jeremy Wilcox: it's good exercise to walk around that neighborhood.
00:11:50.670 --> 00:11:58.650 Jeff Goodman: That must have been I was going to use a big word for city planners when I had to lay those streets out and decide how how how it always going to work.
00:12:00.420 --> 00:12:06.240 Jeremy Wilcox: yeah so I mean one of the ways that they you know, besides the fact that you know the roads kind of do eventually curb and wind around.
00:12:07.590 --> 00:12:15.000 Jeremy Wilcox: There are the series of stairs that go up from level to level, so if you were say walking North from Yankee stadium up to Rome Ave.
00:12:15.540 --> 00:12:23.220 Jeremy Wilcox: As you're making your way north, if you look to your left there's going to be a series of stairs some are just kind of straight going up some kind of curve and wind.
00:12:24.060 --> 00:12:31.710 Jeremy Wilcox: And it's kind of like a nice experience but that's just say you live closer to the actual highbridge and you need to get down to the subway.
00:12:32.160 --> 00:12:42.480 Jeremy Wilcox: You will need to like walk down those stairs every day and hypothetically walk back up them at the end of the day, so I always imagined that the people who live on that end of the neighborhood are in pretty good shape.
00:12:43.230 --> 00:12:45.690 Jeff Goodman: And it'd be nice if they had a physically there.
00:12:46.290 --> 00:12:48.570 Jeff Goodman: something you don't see much in this country but.
00:12:48.810 --> 00:12:56.250 Jeff Goodman: There was some places where would make a lot of sense well in San Francisco they have cable cars, but those are straight lines and not windy roads um.
00:12:56.940 --> 00:13:05.250 Jeff Goodman: there's a particular housing development that was built more than 100 years ago I think that's one of your favorites do you want to talk about the park Plaza apartments.
00:13:05.790 --> 00:13:17.220 Jeremy Wilcox: Oh yeah so the park Plaza apartments it's actually it's my favorite art DECO residential building in New York City anytime i'm up in that neighborhood I always find myself wandering over to Jerome avenue to look at it.
00:13:18.240 --> 00:13:26.850 Jeremy Wilcox: it's got gorgeous terracotta is really just beautiful building inside and out even from the outside, if you kind of just pick through the door.
00:13:27.510 --> 00:13:41.730 Jeremy Wilcox: You can see the beautiful lobby detail so it was completed in 1931 by architects horse Ginsburg and marvin find, who did a number of buildings in that part of the bronx and it's absolutely massive it basically looks like three towers in one.
00:13:42.900 --> 00:13:53.910 Jeremy Wilcox: gorgeous stone detailing again gorgeous terracotta artwork you can probably spend you know 1520 minutes just wandering back and forth on the perimeter and noticing all the details, but it really speaks to the.
00:13:54.240 --> 00:14:05.250 Jeremy Wilcox: architectural ambition of a lot of the development that was being built there throughout the 1920s and 30s you know, these were just instill are really tremendously gorgeous apartment buildings.
00:14:05.760 --> 00:14:10.680 Jeff Goodman: And it was declared in New York City landmark and it was declared a landmark actually 40 years ago in 1981.
00:14:11.340 --> 00:14:12.870 Jeremy Wilcox: Yes, also speak well deserved.
00:14:13.470 --> 00:14:15.240 Jeff Goodman: yeah which which speaks to.
00:14:16.350 --> 00:14:26.790 Jeff Goodman: The the artistry of the building to have been for an apartment building they had been declared a landmark for an apartment building in the bronx declared landmark and I did anyone that's really saying something about it.
00:14:27.150 --> 00:14:33.630 Jeremy Wilcox: i'll just give people a you know, a hint if you were looking for, if you literally go into Rome and you've literally right behind Yankee stadium it's right there.
00:14:34.800 --> 00:14:38.820 Jeff Goodman: Okay, so the next time or listeners go to the ball game and it's on Jerome avenue.
00:14:39.300 --> 00:14:39.960 Jeremy Wilcox: Correct yes.
00:14:41.610 --> 00:14:54.420 Jeff Goodman: All right, we're gonna take a short break and when we come back we're going to continue our discussion with JEREMY wilcox of custom nyc tours of bound highbridge and then about concourse will actually we've talked about average we're going to talk about conquest will be back in a moment.
00:17:09.660 --> 00:17:12.510 Jeff Goodman: we're back and you're back to rediscovering New York and I.
00:17:12.510 --> 00:17:14.280 Jeff Goodman: think this is episode 124 I.
00:17:14.280 --> 00:17:16.560 Jeff Goodman: can't believe what we've done within 100 programs on new.
00:17:16.560 --> 00:17:32.430 Jeff Goodman: york's neighborhoods and related topics, my first guest is JEREMY wilcox JEREMY is the founder and owner of custom nyc tours he has some great towards JEREMY you want to talk about some of the the fantastic offerings that you have that are still available during the rest of the summer.
00:17:33.090 --> 00:17:42.510 Jeremy Wilcox: yeah so my two most popular tours that summer have been my central park tour, which is available many mornings, I also do an art DECO and landmark tour and midtown.
00:17:43.650 --> 00:17:53.130 Jeremy Wilcox: To a highbridge sorry highline tour in the afternoons and on weekends, I do a tour around my neighborhood of the Victorian flat question historic district.
00:17:53.880 --> 00:18:07.110 Jeff Goodman: And I still have to go in that's just you know you got to send me the dates again I you've done it, you know full disclosure everyone JEREMY has told me when the when those tours are available, I just haven't made myself available of them, yet, but I will.
00:18:08.580 --> 00:18:12.240 Jeff Goodman: And how can people find out about about your tours and about your offerings.
00:18:12.840 --> 00:18:24.990 Jeremy Wilcox: So if you go to my website, which is WW dot custom and yc tours COM, you can see a full list of my tours you can see my calendar, I also can do usually private tours on request depending on my schedule.
00:18:26.490 --> 00:18:30.570 Jeff Goodman: Well let's talk about concourse How did the neighborhood get its name.
00:18:31.590 --> 00:18:43.170 Jeremy Wilcox: So the neighborhood gets its name from the kind of famous street that runs north of the bronx the grand concourse the grand boulevard so like hybrid is a very literal name named after the the concourse.
00:18:44.400 --> 00:18:49.980 Jeff Goodman: And we'll talk about actually the building in a moment, but let's digress a little bit it.
00:18:50.550 --> 00:18:57.750 Jeff Goodman: Of course it hosts the bronx is most famous to traction at least baseball fans we've talked about it before that's Yankee stadium.
00:18:58.410 --> 00:19:06.480 Jeff Goodman: it's sort of straddles the dividing line between conquest and highbridge, but I think it's on the concourse side of the line you know and blessed time I looked at a map when was it built.
00:19:07.110 --> 00:19:15.750 Jeremy Wilcox: So the original stadium was built in 1923 obviously right around the time that the neighborhood itself was really beginning to develop the way we know it, as today.
00:19:16.230 --> 00:19:28.530 Jeremy Wilcox: Prior to that, the Yankees did play at the polo grounds in Upper Manhattan just not that far, on the other side of the Harlem river and then obviously the stadium that exists there today.
00:19:29.250 --> 00:19:42.240 Jeremy Wilcox: Not from 1923 but sort of just on the other side of the road, there was built on the side of mccomb damn park and then the former site to the original stadium is now kind of a nice little green open green space as well.
00:19:42.900 --> 00:19:56.580 Jeff Goodman: Well, a lot of people think that a subway series refers to the Yankees and the mets but actually refers to when the Yankees used to play the giants across and there was this there was a subway line that doesn't exist anymore, but that's another story for another day.
00:19:57.750 --> 00:20:07.560 Jeff Goodman: This part of the bronx was actually part of westchester JEREMY before it became part of New York City, how did it become end up becoming part of New York City again if it was part of westchester county.
00:20:08.400 --> 00:20:12.000 Jeremy Wilcox: So it's kind of fascinating the history of the bronx because.
00:20:12.330 --> 00:20:20.280 Jeremy Wilcox: You know, part of it was part of New York City, even before the annexation so a lot of this area was considered part of West westchester county in there were several.
00:20:20.610 --> 00:20:25.980 Jeremy Wilcox: Different towns that would form, including the town of westchester West farms more sanity on the former more as a state.
00:20:26.370 --> 00:20:31.500 Jeremy Wilcox: And then these areas seceded from westchester to become part of New York City.
00:20:31.890 --> 00:20:41.250 Jeremy Wilcox: Mostly, because you weren't getting access to better municipal systems that way, and then, following the 1898 consolidation of the borough's into the city of New York all the former.
00:20:41.670 --> 00:20:52.170 Jeremy Wilcox: Parts of that county that used to be part of westchester then became part of the bronx so you know just a lot of sort of back and forth in terms of the municipal history of that little section of that county.
00:20:52.890 --> 00:21:00.480 Jeff Goodman: And of course the building and completion of the irt subway that eventually first one i'm drum avenue, but then i'm a river avenue.
00:21:01.020 --> 00:21:14.880 Jeff Goodman: That just didn't spur development and highbridge it's spurted along the other side along the eastern side of the of the subway line when would we begin to see development in the neighborhood that we would recognize today as concourse when did that start.
00:21:15.960 --> 00:21:23.400 Jeremy Wilcox: So you did have developments there again some in the late 19th century, but really as we see it today would have began in the 1920s.
00:21:23.820 --> 00:21:31.200 Jeremy Wilcox: Just like highbridge with most of the more famous buildings completed in the 1930s 1930s was, I mean it's.
00:21:31.650 --> 00:21:45.330 Jeremy Wilcox: amazing you know when people stop and think about this like this, they weren't just all this building was happening in the depression, but it really was, and so the concourse, as we know it today really was built up in the first you know five years of the Great Depression.
00:21:46.050 --> 00:21:54.390 Jeff Goodman: hmm let's talk about the arterial heart of of the neighborhood the grand concourse What was it like before it was built.
00:21:54.870 --> 00:22:06.900 Jeff Goodman: Was it farmland, or were there other things that that were there that people would have recognized and not recognized, but that that that still would discern it as being a place where people lived in work and not just in not just a rural setting.
00:22:07.590 --> 00:22:17.640 Jeremy Wilcox: So it was even through for the majority of the 19th century it really was somewhat of a rural setting there were you know some largest states are, I mentioned the Morris family they had the most prominent who stayed.
00:22:18.660 --> 00:22:27.120 Jeremy Wilcox: In some small developments, but really nothing that we would think of as a neighborhood right until you know the early 20th century.
00:22:28.650 --> 00:22:35.940 Jeff Goodman: When was it planned and what was the vision of it and was it the vision actually it's a multi part question.
00:22:36.540 --> 00:22:47.070 Jeff Goodman: wasn't the two parts to start when was the plan and was it the vision of a single person JEREMY or a group of urban planners like we might find today, when the neighborhoods are planned in the city.
00:22:47.760 --> 00:22:50.550 Jeremy Wilcox: Well, really two sections, the main original kind of.
00:22:51.960 --> 00:22:56.160 Jeremy Wilcox: I guess originator of it was a French immigrant name louie a lawyer or say.
00:22:56.970 --> 00:23:09.330 Jeremy Wilcox: Who was inspired by the shameful is a in Paris in his native France and he felt that the bronx should have just this beautiful wide boulevard and he came That was the kind of original idea for the grand concourse.
00:23:09.690 --> 00:23:19.500 Jeremy Wilcox: And it was just it was would be, why did have like the original park avenue like a park running down the middle middle middle beautiful walkway so the original concourse was built between.
00:23:20.610 --> 00:23:24.840 Jeremy Wilcox: Which when they began construction and was largely complete in 1909.
00:23:25.470 --> 00:23:36.360 Jeremy Wilcox: But extensions were done in the 1920s and a lot of changes were made to that area when the apartment buildings were going up in the 30s a lot of it being done with kind of new deal money.
00:23:36.840 --> 00:23:56.370 Jeremy Wilcox: The idea was to turn this grand boulevard into what they pitched as the park avenue for the middle class so taking this beautiful boulevard which had existed already with these grand per region ambitions and turn it into a gorgeous place for sort of upwardly mobile middle class people.
00:23:57.120 --> 00:24:12.210 Jeff Goodman: It was also partly result of the city beautiful movement at the time as well and, unlike the trump Silesia people think that the shop Silesia, I mean it is, it is spectacular, but the grand concourse is actually longer than the shop, so they say it's about four miles.
00:24:13.140 --> 00:24:27.180 Jeremy Wilcox: Oh absolutely I mean you can go start from that area, the bronx and you can go all the way up you know past, you know the Arthur avenue area fordham university and just keep going, I mean it's really amazing if you a stroll up the concourse is just a wonderful way to view the bronx.
00:24:28.950 --> 00:24:34.740 Jeff Goodman: who were the first communities who would first move to the grand concourse when the buildings went up.
00:24:36.030 --> 00:24:44.070 Jeremy Wilcox: So the first Community is again would have been you know middle class again people with grand ambitions upwardly mobile it was various you know there were a lot of Jewish people there at the time.
00:24:44.910 --> 00:24:58.950 Jeremy Wilcox: You know, we don't that's not the way I think some people would think of the bronx today, but it was a lot of Jewish people living in that area and would have been no middle class people who were looking for apartments but apartments that made them feel no grand.
00:25:00.210 --> 00:25:08.610 Jeff Goodman: I know they were for a lot of people who moved to the grand concourse they had amenities, and as far as the sizes of bathrooms.
00:25:09.060 --> 00:25:12.420 Jeff Goodman: And apartments that they didn't have from places that they would have moved.
00:25:12.420 --> 00:25:14.160 Jeff Goodman: From more congested Manhattan.
00:25:15.240 --> 00:25:26.670 Jeremy Wilcox: Oh yes, huge huge apartments you know beautiful bathrooms you know gorgeous gorgeous lobbies doorman you know elevator buildings which wasn't necessarily always the norm at that time.
00:25:27.300 --> 00:25:33.990 Jeremy Wilcox: You know sunken living rooms hardwood floors just really beautiful living both not only then, but you know, still today as well.
00:25:35.190 --> 00:25:45.780 Jeff Goodman: Well let's talk about some of the architecture in the neighborhood especially along the grand concourse, are there any buildings that you have that you're especially fun there any buildings that you are especially fond of that that are along the avenue.
00:25:46.200 --> 00:25:55.050 Jeremy Wilcox: yeah So when I bring people there there's always three main buildings, I love to show them one is the bronx county courthouse, which is a beautiful piece of art DECO architecture.
00:25:55.440 --> 00:26:04.110 Jeremy Wilcox: But the two most beautiful apartment buildings which are just a few blocks apart, one is 888 grand concourse, which is a beautiful corner building.
00:26:05.340 --> 00:26:13.440 Jeremy Wilcox: And had used to have this beautiful fountain in the lobby the fountain is still there doesn't really work anymore, and my personal favorite 1150 grand concourse.
00:26:13.980 --> 00:26:18.930 Jeremy Wilcox: better known to a lot of people as the fish building because of the beautiful fish mosaics on the facade.
00:26:19.710 --> 00:26:30.420 Jeremy Wilcox: That building has, in my opinion, one of those gorgeous art DECO residential lobbies in the city, I mean just really beautiful and these apartments are actually very well maintained even today.
00:26:31.200 --> 00:26:36.090 Jeff Goodman: And what's the address of that and what's across street of the of the building so.
00:26:36.210 --> 00:26:40.470 Jeff Goodman: Those people are strolling up around the grand concourse they might want to poke their heads in and have a look.
00:26:41.130 --> 00:26:49.830 Jeremy Wilcox: Sure, so the first one was is you know turmeric is 38888 the second one I mentioned was 1150 grand Congress just going to look up with the.
00:26:50.400 --> 00:27:08.250 Jeremy Wilcox: Cross street there is but that's, better known as efficiently about 1115 1150 is really close to the bronx museum of art, which you should also check out to the crust free to that one is 167 so it's just about a block south of the 167 street station on the B amp D lines.
00:27:09.000 --> 00:27:14.370 Jeff Goodman: Well i'm proud to say i've actually been to the bronx museum of art and more than once i've been i've actually been up there twice.
00:27:14.910 --> 00:27:26.550 Jeff Goodman: um let's talk about the IND some way for a second what was the genesis it's literally two blocks away from the iot on on river road it's under the grand concourse.
00:27:27.300 --> 00:27:35.070 Jeff Goodman: Since we're already was a subway at that point, what was the idea and planning of another subway line that ran only two blocks from the iot.
00:27:36.300 --> 00:27:46.410 Jeremy Wilcox: I mean wanted provided different service, you know express service, it was underground so when they've been reliant on on whether the way sometimes the overhead lines can get shut down in the winter.
00:27:47.040 --> 00:27:58.080 Jeremy Wilcox: You know, it just the city was just looking for ways to add additional transit to that area and also a way to connecting to some of the IND lines that were being built in the city.
00:27:59.430 --> 00:28:09.780 Jeff Goodman: And there are some other very interesting attractions in the area, aside from the bronx museum of the arts is Joyce kilmer park and also the Andrew Friedman home which we're going to be talking about with our second guest in a couple of minutes.
00:28:10.830 --> 00:28:21.750 Jeff Goodman: One in the in the minute or two, we have left JEREMY i'd like to talk about the evolution of concourse like many New York neighborhoods it saw significant decline.
00:28:22.080 --> 00:28:28.110 Jeff Goodman: After the Second World War, in fact, for those of us old enough to remember the world series in 1977.
00:28:28.620 --> 00:28:33.900 Jeff Goodman: Who could forget Howard cosell who actually didn't say the bronx is burning, but he said something similar to that and he was.
00:28:34.380 --> 00:28:45.510 Jeff Goodman: credited with this phrase that he actually didn't say, but you know in in tone that when did when did concourse begin to improve again and get on the road to the neighborhood that it is today.
00:28:46.530 --> 00:28:51.000 Jeremy Wilcox: So really at the beginning of this century, there was a major investment in that area.
00:28:51.810 --> 00:29:00.150 Jeremy Wilcox: For instance, the D O T began, making a lot of improvements both aesthetic and safety designed to the actual concourse itself.
00:29:00.630 --> 00:29:06.720 Jeremy Wilcox: This was a way of you know, telling people in the neighborhood that the city still cared about them and wanted it to look Nice.
00:29:07.500 --> 00:29:09.900 Jeremy Wilcox: So there's a lot of redesigns of the streets there.
00:29:10.530 --> 00:29:23.670 Jeremy Wilcox: Then you had in 2011 when the big portion of that neighborhood was declared a landmark and then a lot of things going on in just in the last decade of redoing kind of the area along the Harlem ever sure.
00:29:24.420 --> 00:29:32.280 Jeremy Wilcox: And a lot of free development but really within the beginning part of this century city really began to reinvest in that neighborhood.
00:29:33.060 --> 00:29:38.340 Jeff Goodman: And even though rediscovering York is not a show about real estate, one of the indicators of a neighborhood.
00:29:39.240 --> 00:29:50.010 Jeff Goodman: Improving and if people wanting to build a future state is owning their own homes and a good number of rental been formally rent former rental buildings on the grand concourse on now cooperatives.
00:29:51.120 --> 00:29:55.230 Jeremy Wilcox: yeah it's actually a nice mix there's a lot of buildings there that are you know, a rent stabilized.
00:29:55.980 --> 00:30:10.170 Jeremy Wilcox: And a lot that are co op so you do have a really good mix and like I said, if you ever are wandering along take a look at those buildings they're generally, you know very well maintained, many of them, including 888 still have dorman just it's beautiful residential architecture.
00:30:10.650 --> 00:30:10.980 hmm.
00:30:12.570 --> 00:30:17.850 Jeff Goodman: Great well JEREMY thanks so much for being a guest once again on the Program.
00:30:18.720 --> 00:30:26.940 Jeff Goodman: Our first guest on this episode about concourse and highbridge has been JEREMY wilcox JEREMY is the owner of custom nyc tours.
00:30:27.360 --> 00:30:38.670 Jeff Goodman: He offers great tours and you can still take advantage of some the summer before the weather starts to turn a little bit cooler and your website is custom nyc tours COM did I get that right.
00:30:39.180 --> 00:30:39.780 Jeremy Wilcox: that's correct.
00:30:40.230 --> 00:30:43.710 Jeff Goodman: All right, well thanks Jeremy and thanks again for being on the Program.
00:30:44.430 --> 00:30:52.980 Jeff Goodman: Welcome we're going to take a short break and when we come back we're going to be speaking with someone who actually heads an arts organization.
00:30:53.370 --> 00:31:05.970 Jeff Goodman: And one of the most spectacular buildings on the grand concourse it was designed as a wrench in residential building, but one a little bit differently from the others along the grand concourse when it was first built will be back in a moment.
00:33:36.300 --> 00:33:51.750 Jeff Goodman: we're back support for rediscovering New York comes from our sponsors to rock modi working strategist at freedom mortgage for assistance in any kind of residential mortgage cerrado can be reached at 718-210-1167.
00:33:52.620 --> 00:33:59.490 Jeff Goodman: and support also comes from Jacqueline hospital interior design specializing in residential and commercial renovation and decorating.
00:34:00.210 --> 00:34:11.220 Jeff Goodman: Jacqueline can be reached at 3474821 700 you can like the show on Facebook and you can also follow me on instagram and Twitter my handle is there a Jeff Goodman nyc.
00:34:11.820 --> 00:34:18.570 Jeff Goodman: If you have comments or questions or if you'd like to get on our mailing list, please email me Jeff at rediscovering New York ny save.
00:34:19.380 --> 00:34:24.150 Jeff Goodman: One of the note before we get to our second guest, even though rediscovering New York is not a show about real estate.
00:34:24.540 --> 00:34:30.810 Jeff Goodman: When i'm not on the air IMD to real estate agent now amazing city where I help my clients buy sale lease and rent property.
00:34:31.530 --> 00:34:37.710 Jeff Goodman: If you or someone you care about is considering a move into active within New York I would love to help you with those real estate needs.
00:34:38.340 --> 00:34:52.950 Jeff Goodman: You can reach me and my team at 646-306-4761 our second guest on this program about Congressman highbridge is Walter per year so he's actually Walter he per year, the third and founder in.
00:34:55.560 --> 00:34:56.310 Jeff Goodman: That third and.
00:34:56.610 --> 00:35:01.200 Walter Puryear: I you will you put it in I don't usually do it that way, but yeah it's okay well.
00:35:01.230 --> 00:35:02.640 Jeff Goodman: i'm i'm i'm, not even a junior.
00:35:04.620 --> 00:35:09.090 Jeff Goodman: Walter is the founder and director of the Andrew Friedman home and the Andrew Friedman home initiative.
00:35:09.840 --> 00:35:15.870 Jeff Goodman: He can see if the Andrew Friedman home as an interdisciplinary residency incubator and educational platform.
00:35:16.230 --> 00:35:22.800 Jeff Goodman: With the goal of Community development and establishing Community assets as an essential cultural resource for the South bronx.
00:35:23.580 --> 00:35:30.330 Jeff Goodman: He established the organization's mission and vision and continues to oversee all of its programming long range planning and new initiatives.
00:35:31.050 --> 00:35:36.750 Jeff Goodman: Walter has cultivated relationships with partnering organizations locally nationally and also internationally.
00:35:37.500 --> 00:35:45.660 Jeff Goodman: As a bronx native Walter has performed written and directed for the Castillo theater and other notable theater and performing arts been using the city that's New York City everyone.
00:35:46.500 --> 00:36:00.780 Jeff Goodman: among his responsibilities, Walter oversees the artists in residence application process interviewing and evaluating candidates for the program and he directs the exhibition planning at the Andrew Friedman home Walter per year, a hearty welcome to rediscovering New York.
00:36:01.350 --> 00:36:07.080 Walter Puryear: Thank you, thank you that's a nice that's a nice welcome I don't usually get nice welcomes like that, so thank you very much.
00:36:07.350 --> 00:36:08.160 Jeff Goodman: Why not you do.
00:36:08.310 --> 00:36:16.140 Jeff Goodman: You have you've you're doing a great thing at the Andrew Friedman home, and you know people on the show you know get recognized an accolade for the great work that they do.
00:36:16.320 --> 00:36:34.470 Walter Puryear: Well, I appreciate that and yeah I do, I mean Thank you again I think it's more we're on the experimental side and i'm on the innovation side, so you know, sometimes that's a little ahead of what people are thinking about or my want to see but.
00:36:34.530 --> 00:36:34.680 well.
00:36:35.880 --> 00:36:41.040 Jeff Goodman: Well we'll talk about that innovation, a second i'd like to do a little background about about the freedmen home.
00:36:41.430 --> 00:36:45.660 Jeff Goodman: you're from New York originally and you're from the bronx we're in the bronx did you grow up where you're from.
00:36:46.110 --> 00:36:58.290 Walter Puryear: I am a true new yorker i've lived in like three four different areas in the bronx and close this area original areas for them and walton our Church was established near there.
00:36:59.190 --> 00:37:08.400 Walter Puryear: And there and then from there i've lived I live in riverdale currently i've lived on summit avenue you're near Yankee stadium i've lived in city island.
00:37:09.690 --> 00:37:10.350 Walter Puryear: So yeah.
00:37:10.470 --> 00:37:10.800 Walter Puryear: I have.
00:37:11.130 --> 00:37:18.990 Walter Puryear: A thorough i'm living experience in the bronx which kind of informs my current outlook.
00:37:19.710 --> 00:37:26.130 Jeff Goodman: Or you live in more places in the bronx water that I have in brooklyn where i'm from and spend most of my life, although I don't live in brooklyn now other than.
00:37:26.310 --> 00:37:31.680 Jeff Goodman: That how How long have you been professionally involved in the arts world.
00:37:32.730 --> 00:37:33.930 Walter Puryear: And the arts world or.
00:37:35.280 --> 00:37:36.000 Jeff Goodman: In the arts world.
00:37:36.360 --> 00:37:37.470 Walter Puryear: Since I was six years old.
00:37:37.800 --> 00:37:39.480 Jeff Goodman: Oh wow yeah.
00:37:40.410 --> 00:37:42.870 Walter Puryear: I started as I started as a child actor.
00:37:44.040 --> 00:37:49.110 Walter Puryear: And it was a coincidence, or maybe not coincidence that I got on stage that early.
00:37:51.450 --> 00:37:59.220 Walter Puryear: And then I kept performing for a while, all the way through it wasn't until junior high school that.
00:38:00.300 --> 00:38:08.880 Walter Puryear: Someone said to me that I could maybe do it professionally and then I continued for much of my early life until my 30s.
00:38:11.640 --> 00:38:21.720 Walter Puryear: Until I realized that actors really don't have any power and the true thing that interests me was narratives much like what you're doing with the radio show I think it's much more.
00:38:22.740 --> 00:38:36.360 Walter Puryear: interesting and socially important to produce narratives contemporary narratives historical narratives that are not normally told or are now we told where it's more inclusive of people and ideas.
00:38:36.690 --> 00:38:36.990 um.
00:38:38.490 --> 00:38:51.480 Jeff Goodman: Well i'd like to ask you about the freedmen home, of course, in concourse before I do let's let's talk about the history of the building that you're in because they may get some of the some of the outcome that that that you've created.
00:38:53.340 --> 00:39:03.300 Jeff Goodman: The freedmen home the treatment home was originally it was not originally established as an arts institution What was it when it was first bill What was it for what was it what was his goal what was its mission.
00:39:03.600 --> 00:39:13.230 Walter Puryear: Well, Andrew Friedman, which I was surprised that the young gentleman didn't speak about him a little bit because Andrew Friedman, is himself a historical figure right.
00:39:14.220 --> 00:39:20.040 Jeff Goodman: Well, actually had it on I had it on my schedule to ask about JEREMY but we were running out of time in our segments, so it could.
00:39:20.040 --> 00:39:21.870 Walter Puryear: ya know I could i'll say it really.
00:39:21.870 --> 00:39:33.510 Walter Puryear: Briefly, I mean Andrew Friedman home architectural building was bequeath by Andrew Friedman, which means that it was one of his will designations and quite a bit of money.
00:39:35.010 --> 00:39:46.080 Walter Puryear: from his personal wealth was allocated towards the construction of Andrew Friedman, and Andrew Friedman home and the mandate was basically to build this facility.
00:39:46.830 --> 00:40:04.140 Walter Puryear: Because he anticipated the crash, for whatever reason to house people who were formerly wealthy but came upon destitute times but could still live with the security and social.
00:40:05.280 --> 00:40:10.530 Walter Puryear: opulence that they experience, due to their breeding and education.
00:40:11.610 --> 00:40:20.880 Walter Puryear: That is what the Andrew Friedman home was originally made for so he built it, knowing that there would be a crash, and that there were quite a few.
00:40:21.360 --> 00:40:29.220 Walter Puryear: Perhaps friends constituents who would be affected by that crash um but besides his constituents being a part of the Andrew Friedman home culture.
00:40:29.910 --> 00:40:47.280 Walter Puryear: He also cultivated an interesting group of formerly aristocratic people who, from around the world who ended up living in that space for a period of time, and it was began construction in 1922 completed construction in 1928.
00:40:47.910 --> 00:40:51.480 Jeff Goodman: On the grand concourse it's quite a sight it goes the length of a whole block.
00:40:51.810 --> 00:40:58.170 Walter Puryear: It is and they don't make it like that anymore right it's it's comparable comparable to grand Central Station.
00:40:58.980 --> 00:41:07.770 Walter Puryear: Some of it, and obviously over the years it's gone into various States of disrepair, but it is still a very beautiful building on.
00:41:08.370 --> 00:41:14.610 Walter Puryear: A lot steel structure, I believe, is the atomic structure that it's called that it's based off of and.
00:41:15.540 --> 00:41:23.820 Walter Puryear: Yes, it is, and it also has a garden, that is the size of a city block in front of it when you come to the entrance on the grand concourse.
00:41:24.180 --> 00:41:34.050 Walter Puryear: So that's what it function dies for many number of years and there were social clubs that happened there, and there was a private library that was there as well.
00:41:34.770 --> 00:41:47.430 Walter Puryear: For people in the home to enjoy and because it was originally a residential facility so but not like we consider it because, on the fourth floor, there was a kind of hospital Ward.
00:41:48.300 --> 00:41:58.110 Walter Puryear: That was also there, so it was a little more than just your standard residential facility, because people there were able to be treated for their medical conditions as well.
00:41:59.070 --> 00:42:06.930 Jeff Goodman: sort of like a modern day adults adult home that also has enhanced nursing or medical facilities but.
00:42:08.130 --> 00:42:23.580 Walter Puryear: I think it goes way beyond a modern home just this part just I mean each floor is 22,000 square feet so just if you ever visit Andrew Friedman home 1125 grand concourse and it is across the street from the bronx museum you'll just see from the lobby itself that it is.
00:42:24.720 --> 00:42:26.130 Walter Puryear: it's quite opulent and grant.
00:42:26.700 --> 00:42:32.790 Jeff Goodman: Well, maybe I can coach you to give me a private tour, sometimes I did want to talk about one of the ask you about one of the thing.
00:42:33.870 --> 00:42:40.380 Jeff Goodman: When well about several things when was an arts organization first established at at freedom.
00:42:41.010 --> 00:42:56.340 Walter Puryear: So that's a that's a major jump on into the present size future but, and so the building was purchased in 1988 by mid wrong senior citizens Council, which is an Community development nonprofit organization.
00:42:57.390 --> 00:43:08.010 Walter Puryear: Soon after it was purchased it was landmarks I think like four years afterwards and so during that time and did wrong senior citizens Council is still the owner during that time.
00:43:08.760 --> 00:43:19.080 Walter Puryear: They had a daycare and still have a daycare headstart daycare in the basement area, and then the first floor was mainly opened up for Community events, meaning.
00:43:20.280 --> 00:43:29.850 Walter Puryear: We have a various changing population of different immigrants, and so they would come to the Andrew Friedman home, and that would be a place where they could rent and they could.
00:43:30.420 --> 00:43:40.890 Walter Puryear: enjoy their various cultural events, whether it was weddings or something more particular so that went on for a period of time and then it wasn't until 2012.
00:43:41.940 --> 00:44:00.840 Walter Puryear: When it we debuted as an art Center or a cultural arts Center it senses evolved beyond that into what it is today, which is an interdisciplinary residency a workforce development program as well as an education Center for youth and adults.
00:44:02.040 --> 00:44:12.150 Walter Puryear: So basically in 2012 is when that was the changeover, and that is marked by our collaboration with no longer empty another known nonprofit.
00:44:12.570 --> 00:44:29.190 Walter Puryear: and show the exhibition was a bronx borough exhibition, so I think we had something like 50 plus artists on two floors and it was greatly attended and that show was called decided paradise, which you could still find online for anyone's curious.
00:44:30.060 --> 00:44:32.010 Jeff Goodman: it's called that true paradise know.
00:44:32.250 --> 00:44:32.760 Walter Puryear: This.
00:44:32.820 --> 00:44:35.250 Jeff Goodman: side of parasite paradise i'm sorry okay.
00:44:35.280 --> 00:44:36.780 Walter Puryear: Based off of fitzgerald's book.
00:44:36.870 --> 00:44:37.890 Jeff Goodman: Oh okay.
00:44:39.270 --> 00:44:46.170 Jeff Goodman: Well we're gonna take a short break and when we come back we're going to continue our conversation with Walter per year Walter is the founder and director.
00:44:46.560 --> 00:44:54.720 Jeff Goodman: Of the Andrew Friedman home and the treatment home initiatives in grant on the grand concourse in concourse in the bronx will be back in a moment.
00:47:25.230 --> 00:47:40.050 Jeff Goodman: we're back and you're back to rediscovering New York and our program tonight about concourse and highbridge in the bronx my guests, on the second part of the program as well to per year Walter is the founder and director of the Andrew Friedman home and the Andrew Friedman home initiative.
00:47:41.850 --> 00:47:48.180 Jeff Goodman: Walter what had you come up with the idea to to create this program at the Andrew Friedman home, was it something that.
00:47:49.050 --> 00:48:01.260 Jeff Goodman: You thought about for a while, or did an opportunity come up at the space and you thought about that incorporating different elements in different in different original artists and you know, in a program how did, how did you get started with it.
00:48:02.610 --> 00:48:17.340 Walter Puryear: I think it's kind of an amalgam of my life experience part of it is so it is not a spontaneous thing part of it was my time in the arts part of it was.
00:48:18.510 --> 00:48:30.450 Walter Puryear: Educating and being a teacher for seven years, part of it was being blessed to have a lot of time to travel to a lot of different countries around the world and to see the difference.
00:48:30.930 --> 00:48:42.810 Walter Puryear: In social systems, as well as education systems and then wonder why that's not here in the borough that I love and so that just turned into a self examination and.
00:48:44.190 --> 00:48:48.150 Walter Puryear: of myself and also the environment, which is that.
00:48:49.620 --> 00:49:02.010 Walter Puryear: The current bronx a lot of people are not going to necessarily have the opportunity to enter academia right, because it is a there's a strong financial return around that.
00:49:03.300 --> 00:49:09.240 Walter Puryear: As well as how the bronx has been seen since the 70s, you mentioned the bronx is burning.
00:49:10.140 --> 00:49:24.210 Walter Puryear: And so that also is determined as far as not only bringing arts, to the bronx but really the turning on people's dreams and what they can do and that kind of became really crystallized when I was working.
00:49:25.230 --> 00:49:36.390 Walter Puryear: In another section of the company and I work with a lot of construction workers and I had an Aha moment because a lot of those carpenters could be art handlers.
00:49:37.560 --> 00:49:47.520 Walter Puryear: So, and the only reason they weren't is because of a education and be the awareness that they could translate their skills to a completely different industry.
00:49:48.090 --> 00:49:56.400 Walter Puryear: And that could benefit their lives, so all of that kind of came together in a moment, and so the Andrew Friedman home started in 2012.
00:49:57.090 --> 00:50:08.070 Walter Puryear: As an artist studio that in exchange for artists having that studio space they would then teach the skills that they have from their particular form of art.
00:50:08.580 --> 00:50:14.820 Walter Puryear: To the surrounding community, so we made classes and workshops around that a lot of the exhibitions.
00:50:15.330 --> 00:50:26.460 Walter Puryear: And performances, because we don't just do exhibitions that's why we're interdisciplinary and a lot of the performances are very much geared to not only telling a compelling narrative.
00:50:26.970 --> 00:50:30.810 Walter Puryear: But telling a narrative in which the people in that neighborhood see themselves in.
00:50:31.680 --> 00:50:41.220 Walter Puryear: and being able to see that narrative that obsessional standard and they can then see how they can translate their own skills to that should they choose.
00:50:41.730 --> 00:50:49.080 Walter Puryear: You know, and you know mid bronx where I work, you know they always say from the cradle to the grave and what they mean by that is.
00:50:49.620 --> 00:50:59.520 Walter Puryear: The ability and the opportunity to transform and educate someone starts at the cradle and ends with the grave maybe right so.
00:51:00.030 --> 00:51:10.440 Walter Puryear: that's pretty much in a nutshell, the idea of what started the Andrew Friedman home because artists are, besides being visionary on they all have their.
00:51:10.950 --> 00:51:22.260 Walter Puryear: unique and eclectic skills and a lot of times people go to academia to learn that, but you don't necessarily need to and in a lot of ways it's the original form of artists artists in right.
00:51:22.650 --> 00:51:34.650 Walter Puryear: came from that apprentice master artists relationships and translating those skills, so I think in a singular sense, we need to get back to that for the bronx and I also think that, in a broader sense for our country.
00:51:36.390 --> 00:51:43.530 Jeff Goodman: How has the programming of the Andrew Friedman home evolved and developed since you first started wearing years ago.
00:51:44.550 --> 00:51:49.860 Walter Puryear: Well, I mean that's a that's a good question a lot of people don't normally ask, I mean we basically started as a.
00:51:50.280 --> 00:51:58.440 Walter Puryear: This artist colony and a kind of barter system right because we asked artists who were participating to teach their skills.
00:51:59.430 --> 00:52:07.650 Walter Puryear: Whether it was youth, or whether it was adults, so there was this kind of exchange, but it wasn't a monetary exchange, which is something that I love and continue to love.
00:52:08.190 --> 00:52:14.610 Walter Puryear: soon as change of knowledge, skills, information, depending on which field you're dealing with right.
00:52:15.450 --> 00:52:26.040 Walter Puryear: And then so that's how I started, and then it developed, because we have a really good workforce program, and that is more geared towards the adults.
00:52:26.820 --> 00:52:37.170 Walter Puryear: We formalized some of the other programs are after school program or Saturday program those became infused with art right, so it became more art education.
00:52:38.460 --> 00:52:45.210 Walter Puryear: And then the type of shows that we did, and I say shows loosely because they fall in all the categories of the fields of art.
00:52:46.260 --> 00:52:55.290 Walter Puryear: They began to be a little more focused on social issues that we saw occurring be occurring are continuing in the bronx, for example, one of our most famous.
00:52:56.040 --> 00:53:01.800 Walter Puryear: Permanent exhibitions that we have at the Andrew Friedman home is called redesigning the red line.
00:53:02.340 --> 00:53:13.170 Walter Puryear: And that was also an interesting thing when the young, when the gentleman was speaking because when you were talking about why do you think the railroads, why do you think the trains were being built.
00:53:13.650 --> 00:53:22.530 Walter Puryear: and part of that is very much because of red line at that particular time and it's a great exhibition, because it shows the relationship between.
00:53:22.980 --> 00:53:27.330 Walter Puryear: property valuation and communities and where people live in.
00:53:27.780 --> 00:53:38.190 Walter Puryear: And population density and most people normally wouldn't think well that's very interesting for an art show, but it actually is very interesting for an art show, because you can visually show.
00:53:38.730 --> 00:53:46.620 Walter Puryear: And contextualize an experience of a group of people that have been living in the bronx for a long period of time, so.
00:53:47.670 --> 00:53:53.220 Walter Puryear: that's kind of like what we do and we've always had that focus at least since i've been a director.
00:53:54.330 --> 00:54:02.760 Walter Puryear: think one of the other shows that we did was called state property and that was about that was around the idea of complicit consumption versus conscientious consumption.
00:54:03.210 --> 00:54:10.410 Walter Puryear: And that was very much about how we, as a population just kind of buying buying buying we're not really thinking about.
00:54:10.860 --> 00:54:19.530 Walter Puryear: What we're buying or, more importantly, where it's coming from and we call it state property because it focused on products that were specifically made in the incarceration system.
00:54:20.280 --> 00:54:30.000 Walter Puryear: So again, these are you know, not necessarily curatorial themes that you see the moment doing or, at least at that time and we did collaborate with the moment but.
00:54:31.740 --> 00:54:41.760 Walter Puryear: We feel, I felt that they're necessary and when you're talking about Community development and people having ownership and feeling ownership in their Community that's a part of it understanding.
00:54:42.120 --> 00:54:47.460 Walter Puryear: The narrative and understanding your place in the narrative and understanding that you can create your own narratives.
00:54:47.970 --> 00:54:48.240 and
00:54:49.560 --> 00:54:56.070 Jeff Goodman: When is when, for how long will the red lining exhibition be up and when can it be seen.
00:54:56.400 --> 00:54:56.610 When.
00:54:57.810 --> 00:55:00.810 Walter Puryear: it's always it's always up um.
00:55:01.140 --> 00:55:02.250 Jeff Goodman: it's permanent exhibition.
00:55:02.430 --> 00:55:10.110 Walter Puryear: As a permanent exhibition on the second floor it's very interesting, we will officially open in September again.
00:55:10.860 --> 00:55:26.340 Walter Puryear: And when I say open, I mean that very loosely because we are still in cove it, so it is very much about small groups and making sure that people are needed and safe um, so we will have a small opening in September.
00:55:27.990 --> 00:55:29.790 Jeff Goodman: i'd love to copy the invitation.
00:55:30.390 --> 00:55:33.000 Jeff Goodman: yeah absolutely would live would love to be there.
00:55:34.290 --> 00:55:41.040 Jeff Goodman: Well, Walter per year founder and director of the Andrew Friedman home Thank you so much for being our guest.
00:55:41.370 --> 00:55:42.600 Jeff Goodman: On this program about.
00:55:42.630 --> 00:56:00.090 Jeff Goodman: About hydrogen concourse well everyone we've just finished this week's exploration of neighborhoods that have really evolved and changed highbridge and concourse from water to baseball to the Yankees to build up as residential development to.
00:56:01.230 --> 00:56:15.870 Jeff Goodman: dilapidation back decades ago to rebirth and regeneration and now with the establishment for nine years now have a really important arts institution that's right on the grand concourse and messy Andrew Friedman home.
00:56:17.340 --> 00:56:23.880 Jeff Goodman: If you have comments or questions about the show, or if you'd like to get on our mailing list, please email me Jeff at rediscovering your pet nyc.
00:56:24.540 --> 00:56:29.460 Jeff Goodman: You can like us on Facebook and follow me on instagram and Twitter my handle is there a Jeff Goodman nyc.
00:56:30.210 --> 00:56:38.610 Jeff Goodman: Once again i'd like to thank our sponsors for this program to rock modi mortgage strategist at freedom mortgage and Jacqueline hartford interior design.
00:56:39.180 --> 00:56:43.800 Jeff Goodman: One more thing, before we sign off i'm Jeff Goodman a real estate agent and brown Harris Stevens in New York City.
00:56:44.250 --> 00:56:50.190 Jeff Goodman: And whether you're selling buying leasing or renting my team and I provide the best service and expertise in New York City real estate.
00:56:50.760 --> 00:57:04.170 Jeff Goodman: To help you, with your real estate needs, you can reach us at 646-306-4761 our producer is Ralph story or our engineer, this evening, returning is the fabulous Emily showman Emily great to have you back.
00:57:05.400 --> 00:57:17.340 Jeff Goodman: Our special consultant is David Griffin of landmark branding stay tuned at 8pm right here on talk radio that nyc for coffee talk excel with Kevin Barbara thanks for listening, everyone will see you next time.