South Street Seaport: Some Fresh Food With Your Towers?

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Pier 17 in the summer of 2005.Photo: Getty Images


The old Fulton Fish Market never caused such a stink. Word leaked last week that the new owner of South Street Seaport, General Growth Properties, wanted to create a tower and open space over what's now the morose "festival marketplace" of Pier 17 — and last night, area residents attempted to slap down the idea. "People in this room are terrified at the idea of towers," declared Jeffrey Schneider, head of the 117 Beekman Street condo association. General Growth's architect, Gregg Pasquarelli, whose firm SHoP worked on the city's plan to build pavilions and parkland on nearby East Side piers, promised that squeezing the mall's square footage into a tower was just one of "25 plans" he's mustering for the new owner. Neighbors want playgrounds and schools; Pasquarelli mentioned the possibility of an outdoor market. Indeed, civic types have proposed New Amsterdam Public, which would be a year-round healthy-food cornucopia. Locally grown kumquats near historic vessels sounds lovely, but General Growth rep Michael McNoughton tells us he expects "several more months" of public talks before his firm proposes a plan. Talks, indeed. As a 119 Beekman resident said: "If you think we're difficult, wait until you deal with Brooklyn Heights." —Alec Appelbaum