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Old 02-04-2012, 06:03 PM
 
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Bryant Park | Bryant Park today

the first paragraph of the above link indicates that Bryant Park seemed to decline in the years between 1974 and 1979

i have heard terrible things about the park back in those days and as a result I never went in. I heard stories not only of drug sales but also of prostitution. Was this true? if so, would you see it outside the park on 6th Avenue (where, prior to 1980, you would actually see some XXX bookstores and peep places on the avenue in the lower 40's)? or was it confined to the park? Just picturing all those characters making their way east toward a better part of midtown
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Old 02-04-2012, 06:18 PM
 
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Is there any place in Manhattan that wasnt F'd up in the late 70's through the 80's?
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Old 02-04-2012, 06:24 PM
 
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i'm interested in the DEGREE that it was F'd u with descriptives!! obviously 42nd and 6th wasn't that bad but if someone knows, i want them to give some details
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Old 02-04-2012, 08:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlrl View Post
obviously 42nd and 6th wasn't that bad
Wasn't that bad??
Yeah it was.
It used to be called 'Needle Park' and the place was run down.
That exact location.
42nd and 6th.
In fact....my brother OD'd right there. He lived, but that was where he spent a lot of time getting high.
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:21 PM
 
Location: Wherever women are
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Just go to YouTube and type in Bryant Park/Times Square in the 70s. It was a happy hunting ground for peep shows and pimps. Lots of prostitutes, drug dealers, squalor and poverty.

It persisted till the 90s when Giuliani kicked everyone's asses and cleaned times square up.

I work with people who were in the area working in the 70s. Once out of grand central, everything after fifth avenue was like no-go zone they said It's incredible how things can change in 30 years.

DIRTY, DANGEROUS & DESTITUTE | NEW YORK IN THE 70s – ALLAN TANNENBAUM The Selvedge Yard

Dirty, dangerous, and destitute. This was New York City in the 1970s. The 1960s were not yet over, and war still raged in Viet Nam, fueling resentment against the government. Nixon and the Watergate scandal created even more resentment, cynicism, and skepticism. Economically, stagnation coupled with inflation created a sense of malaise. The Arab Oil Embargo of 1973 delivered another blow to the U.S. economy, and brought the misery of long lines to buy gasoline. Conditions in Harlem and Bed-Stuy were horrendous, with abandoned buildings and widespread poverty. The subways were covered everywhere with ugly graffiti and they were unreliable. It seemed as if the entire infrastructure was in decay. Political corruption, sloppy accounting, and the cost of the war were killing the city. Times Square, the crossroads of the world, was seedy and sleazy. Pimps, hookers, and drug dealers owned the night there. Crime was rampant, and the police were powerless to stop it. Random killings by the “Son of Sam” made New Yorkers even more fearful. The parks were in decay, with litter and bare lawns, and it was home to muggers and rapists. When the proud City of New York had to beg the Federal Government for a financial bail-out, the President said no. The Daily News headline said it all: “Ford to City – Drop Dead.”
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:31 PM
 
Location: Wherever women are
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What may have helped in the 90s was that porn and the adult business went digital with the bursting of the internet.

That was a vital development in technology. Otherwise, no way in hell those sex shops were disappearing.
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Old 02-04-2012, 09:38 PM
 
Location: Wherever women are
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42nd street subway station video from 1986. Such a terrific difference in the look, feel and present atmosphere. It's astonishing. Check out the graffiti on the trains, seems like a new york on another planet. It's scary. I just imagined myself commuting out of there late at night, like I do sometimes these days. Unbelievable how people from those days may have felt like.

This video of the Times Square Subway station is as old as I am



Check out this vintage 70s(ish) subway photo

TFA Explains: How Times Square got cleaned up
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Old 02-05-2012, 04:10 PM
 
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AC--you're kidding!! everything after Grand Central? Madison, 5th and 6th and 42nd hookers? great article too
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Old 02-05-2012, 07:08 PM
 
Location: Wherever women are
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlrl View Post
AC--you're kidding!! everything after Grand Central? Madison, 5th and 6th and 42nd hookers? great article too
I am not sure, I was 6 in 1986

But literature, pictures and documents of the time paint a miserable picture. I have intensive knowledge of the Arab embargo and the economic effects it had on the United States for the subsequent years, but I did not imagine that would be at the fulcrum of a decadent NYC devoid of budget for cleaning up. Perhaps the fall of the USSR and the influx of capital revitalized things in the 90s and rightly so.

To get a feel of the drug culture of the time, you can watch a few movies. There's this Al Pacino one called "Panic in needle park" set in upper west side, but that's more like the 70s. Ridley Scott does a fine job in American Gangster, showing the state of the times, possibly early 80s. I even have a man crush on Russell Crowe with a lot of hair LOL Great music in the movie.

Anyway, I couldn't relate myself, coz I know times square from the now. But like I said, I work with sharks who have been working in the city since the 70s. They are quite convincing in the nature and intensity of the squalor and seediness of the time. And those videos make you believe it.
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Old 02-05-2012, 09:20 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn New York
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That subway picture above is accurate. I rode those trains from my first job in the City, with all the grafitti, and no air condition what so ever, that was a hell.

Anything above 6th was not the greatest.


but hey, I lived through it. My sons cant believe the stories I can tell them, and just imagine the stories I DON'T tell them. LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL
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