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Bellevue Hospital, most famously known as "America’s oldest public hospital" was founded March 31, 1736, located on First Avenue in the Kips Bay neighborhood of Manhattan, New York. Because of political mishandling and the lack of efficiency in the government, the hospital went through an extreme hardship, in the early 19th century. One of the many architects that worked on the original Bellevue Hospital building were the Norcross Brothers who worked for McKim, Mead, and White, a prominent nineteenth century American construction company, who were especially skilled in working with stone, notably Stony Creek Granite. James Atkinson and Orlando Whitney, the Norcross Brothers, are credited for being involved in designing over 650 projects while they worked with the architectural firms of H.H. The Norcross Brothers’ primary building material of the time was stone which was provided by Stony Creek Quarry, located in Branford, Connecticut.
Bellevue Hospital has undergone many changes and advancements over the years; most dramatic was the design of a new 210,000 square foot ambulatory-care pavilion and main entrance for First Avenue. Green Clean Energy at Lower CostFor your home or apartment Click here, enter zip code to check rates.
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Randalls Island, a barely populated mile-square oasis of renovated parkland and city-owned facilities in the East River, has emerged as the last major battleground over redrawing district lines for a new City Council.
Late last year news broke that the redistricting commission appointed by Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Mayor Bloomberg had attempted a last-minute change to the final lines for one Brooklyn Council district so that Vito Lopez, the assemblyman and accused serial sexual harasser, would be eligible to run for that seat.
The media fury over the Lopez maneuver grew so loud that the commission was forced to go back to the drawing board.
But that scandal has obscured an equally indefensible proposal by the commission involving Randalls Island and the 8th Council District in East Harlem. If youa€™ve ever spent time on Randalls Island, you know it is geographically closer to the industrial southern tip of the Bronx than to any other borough.
Thanks to a pedestrian bridge over the East River that connects to East Harlem, Randalls has always been the favorite park of El Barrio residents.


Yet the redistricting commission now wants to shift Randalls into a Queens Council District currently held by Peter Vallone Jr., even though Queens is the most remote to Randalls of the adjoining boroughs. East Harlem residents suspect it has something to do with their repeated objections to the Bloomberg administrationa€™s efforts to turn Randalls Island Park into a playground for affluent New Yorkers - with expensive tennis, golf and other private entertainment ventures, all overseen by the nonprofit Randalls Island Park Alliance. Carl Hum, the redistricting commissiona€™s executive director, rejects such conspiracy theories. About 1,000 homeless people are domiciled at city shelters on the island, plus a few hundred patients reside at the Manhattan Psychiatric Hospital located there. But since few of the folks on Randalls ever vote, Hum said his staff moved the island out and instead shifted Mark-Viveritoa€™s district far into the Bronx - all in an effort, he said, to assure that the district remains a largely Hispanic voting district as required by the Voting Rights Act. By cutting out Randalls Island and its homeless population from Mark-Viverito's district, the commission is proposing a district that is half in Manhattan and half in the Bronx. No wonder good government groups like Common Cause are blasting this Randalls Island subterfuge. When the commission holds its final public hearing in Manhattan Monday night, East Harlem residents should bring along a big map to remind everyone where Randalls Island is. The construction of a "Public Workhouse and House of Correction" begun in 1735 to house "vagabonds and idle beggars", for the purpose of correcting social problems in society; the upper floor, only about 25 by 23 feet in dimension, was used as an infirmary. Dating all the way back to September, 1776, when a large number of destitute persons were admitted after a devastating fire. Bellevue went to shambles, many of their loyal employees deserted, nurses would simply leave the sick to fend for themselves, conditions were deplorable, supplies were insufficient, little food was available and many patients simply waited to die in blankets of their own filth.
According to the New York Historical Society "The original building was built around 1910 and had Stony Creek at the entrance veneer.
The five story pavilion has a total of 270 exam rooms, the construction costing $84 million dollars, a huge advance from the six bed infirmary it started out as. Ships with fresh samples of sparkling Stony Creek pink granite for historians, collectors, geologists and classrooms.


Little wonder that the island is officially part of the East Harlem Community Board and has been part of East Harlem Councilwoman Melissa Mark-Viveritoa€™s district. It would actually have a mere 20 more residents in the Bronx than in East Harlem, thus making it for political purposes a Bronx Council seat. Severe epidemics such as yellow fever, 1794-1805, and typhus fever, in the early 19th century, caused a considerable amount of Bellevue staff to be occupied in burying the dead in one of the first American hospital cemeteries, created in 1757. Finally, by mid-century, commissioners worked diligently to improve the state of the hospital. The original project cost $35,050, the site drawings and plans unfortunately have been lost overtime. Among the Norcross Brothers’ most famous accomplishments were the Trinity Church located in Boston, the Marshall Fields & Company building in Chicago, Illinois, and the Allegheny County Courthouse in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania (Wikipedia). Pei Cobb Freed architectural company’s renovations have won the hospital awards such as "Lighting Design Award of Merit", "Gold Award for Engineering Excellence" in 2006 and the "Award of Merit" from the New York Construction, Best of 2005.
Their main goal was to "free the hospital of the burdens of also being a penal institution" (Magazine). All impressive advancements, however, buildings such as Bellevue Hospital would not be what they are today, if not for the influence of early constructions companies like the Norcross Brothers, and the hospital would not stand without the use of Stony Creek granite. The mortality rate decreased, the hospital board was then comprised of distinguished physicians and surgeons and the role of medical education became Bellevue’s claim to fame. They incorporated the old buildings ground floor entrance and enclosed it into an indoor walkway and pavilion in 1999. Stony Creek was used on the paving in the pavilion." Due to years of deterioration, renovations commenced in order to preserve Bellevue’s landmark exterior, "historic preservation and conservation were key elements and important design goals of the project" (according to the Preservation League of New York state).




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