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From the Upper East Side, looking southwest. Photo: Photos: Stan Honda/AFP/Getty Images

We don't know what prompted Agence France-Presse to charter a helicopter Sunday and send one of their photogs to take a bunch of aerial shots of the city, and we don't know what prompted Getty Images to distribute those shots in the middle of the week, but we're glad they both did. It's a pretty town on a pretty day, eh? More gratuitous urban-beauty shots after the jump.


The Empire State Building and surrounding construction.


From midtown, looking south.


From the East Village, looking southwest.


From the Lower East Side, looking northwest.


Lower Manhattan.