December 9th, 2014
Composer Hiroya Miura has created “Lightmotif”: a musical soul-shaking for the new solar cycle as part of the Make Music Winter Festival. On December 21 in Long Island City brass musicians will march while playing a call-and-answer pattern following the path of the Long Island City Sundial. The musicians will march in a line tracing the shadow of the gnomon in different times of the day, while attentively tuning into the brightness of their surroundings and street sound. Join in as audience or participant (brass musicians welcome)–more information here.
Thanks to Hiroya Miura for this excellent celebration of the Solstice and the LIC Sundial!
December 13th, 2007
New – Winter-focused tour – as printable PDF
August 28th, 2007
NEIGHBORHOOD REPORT: LONG ISLAND CITY; Controversy Died Down; Wind Hasn’t
By BRUCE LAMBERT
Published: February 6, 1994, The New York Times
Citicorp’s tower, an impressive skyscraper, sometimes sweeps people off their feet — literally. Powerful winds sporadically swirling around it actually lift unwary pedestrians off the ground, neighbors say.
“I know it’s hard to believe, but people get blown into midair,” said Susan P. Chetwin, general manager of the Muzak office across the street on Jackson Avenue. Her workers regularly use the tower for its Citibank branch and basement subway stop.
Jean McIntyre, describing a daily bank errand for Muzak, said, “the wind picked me up completely off the sidewalk — this is no exaggeration — and I was just flying through the air.” She was lifted several inches off the ground and flung about 20 feet away, she estimates.
“It felt like I was going 30 miles an hour. I was headed for a glass window, so I managed to throw myself to the ground to prevent that. I hurt my shoulder, hip and head. I was dazed for a while. I could have been killed there.”
Just what is causing the turbulence is unclear. A Citicorp spokesman said, however, that the company took precautions recently by temporarily closing one entrance, posting warnings and putting up a rope railing; further measures are being studied.
Speaking without specific knowledge of the Citicorp situation, experts noted that wind striking skyscrapers can create strong drafts. Irwin G. Cantor, a structural engineer specializing in tall buildings, said that scientists can make a model of a building and its surroundings, then measure air flow in a wind tunnel “to learn where the hot spots are.” Installing planters or trees might help buffer the wind, he said.
Writing to Citicorp on Jan. 4 about turbulence that day, Ms. Chetwin said three workers were swept off their feet, including one who “was blown into a pole and slightly injured and has gone home for the day.” An earlier letter described a woman being hurled beneath a standing car.
Citicorp should erect a covered walkway or handrail, she wrote the company. Citicorp wrote back that the matter was being reviewed.
Although Muzak’s office is only a few hundred feet from the tower, on windy days its staff often ferries people back and forth by car. “Maybe if I had fatter employees,” Ms. Chetwin said, “this wouldn’t be such a problem.” B.L.
July 15th, 2007
Today’s sundial self-guided walking tour map from MeatSpace Gallery to the gnomon is downloadable here as a PDF–it is applicable for days other than the 15th.
July 15 tour map