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Real estate record and builders' guide: v. 43, no. 1107: June 1, 1889

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June 1, 1889 Record and Guide. 7.59 "^ .,. '^ ESTABLISHED-^Aarphsiu^ Iaee.^ Dev^TTI) to I^E^L EsrWE , BuiLOI^O AjlcKlTECTJ[^E ,KoUSE}IOLD DEQOR^noiJ. Bl/siiVess Alto Themes of Ge^eevL Ij^tei^esj PRICE, PER VEAR IIV ADVANCE, SIX DOLLARS. Published every Saturday. TELEPHONE, - - - JOHN 370, (Communications should be addressed to C.W. SWEET, 191 Broadway. /. T. LINDSEY, Business Manager. Vol. XLIII. JUNE 1, 1889. No. 1,107 To-day over $3,000,000 gold wiU leave the country. On Wednes¬ day and Thursday last daraaging frosts put in an appearance in some sections of the couutry, and at the sarae thne came the reports of rate cutting among the Western roads, so it is no wonder that the stock market shows a reaction at the close of the week. The wonder is that the reaction is not greater. Aniong those who are well-informed about railroad matters it is cooGdently stated that the rate cutting will not amount to much, but that all matters can, and wili be, easily adjusted. Those who have been so frequently scorched, however,will recogoize an old friend in these denials, and will not so readily take stock in tbe assertion that everything can be so easily fixed. It is a favorite saying, that uo war of rates among railroads ever takes place with a big crop in sight, and gen¬ erally speaking this is true, altliough the fight among the Western roads last fall gave tbis belief a slight shaking, till the pre.-^idents' agreement, which soon followed, showed that railroads can always fix up rates with big business in sight. It still looks as though Wall street was in for a bull campaign this summer, and should the weather continue favorable speculators will see to it that the bull market keeps pace with the crop outlook. Outside general business conditions are favorable. The recent large dry-goods auction sales were all considered highly successful, and indicated that the couutry is not overstocked with goods in distributors' hands. On the whole the outlook is decidedly favorable, but it is well to remember that one swallow does not make a summer. The'completion of the Fifth Avenue Elevated road in Brooklyn is another blow at the prosperity of Nevv York. It means the open¬ ing of another avenue for the exodus of citizens disgusted with the deplorable condition of rapid transit on this island. It means the beginning of large building operations ui the 22d and Sth Wards across the East River instead of in the annexed district across the Harlem. The activity is likely to he especially striking in the 23d Ward, Brooklyn, wbich, under the stimulus of merely the promise of,rapid transit, has become a populous district of beautiful and substantial homes. In the iast five years 1,309 btrildings have been constructed there at a cost of about $13,000,000. There is not any manner of doubt that by far the greater part of this has been done atthe expense of this city, aud indeed the sameistrue of the entire of the wonderful building boom in Brooklyn, which, since 1884, haa resulted in the construction of more than 16,000 buildings at a cost of over $80,000,000. This boom still continues, and for several weeks past plans have been filed at the Kings County Building Department for from half a million to a million dollars' worth of new buildings weekly. With anytliing like decent rapid transit much of this activity would be transferred to the upper wards in this city, which to-day are less developed than any outlying ward in Brooklyn. But it is out of the question to expect people to make homes in a district that cannot be reached without nearly an hour's standing in packed, unhealthy cars. All this might be ohviated by departing from tbe senseless policy of ciying for some " perfect" system of transportation instead of allowing those who are willing to improve our present facilities to go ahead and improve them. In the meantime we can continue to search Heaven and earth for a perfect system, and strive to recon¬ cile all the conflicting interests in tbe way of patting it in operation when we have found it. The welfare of the city will not suffer then with; a third track on the elevated roads and a loop at the Battery. Transportation will be quicker and much more comfort¬ able than it is, and we shall retain a large part of the increase in our population which is now rapidly building up Brooklyn and New Jersey towns to our detriment. There is something unquestionably suspicious about the sudden reduction of the salary list in the Department of Public Works by the new commissioner. On the face of it the reduction effected hy the discharge of useless or supernumerary persons without filhng their places amounts to $50,000 a year. Adult and experienced New Yorkers are requested tp believe that an oflScial representing Tammany Hall prefers to present this amount to the taxpayers rather than to the organization. So far as we know their views, such New Yorkers will decline this request. If no offlce is to be continued that is uot needed, and if no officer is to he appointed to a place he is not fit for, what is the use of i he municipal government to the organization, as the members of the latter might put it, " at all at.all." Meanwhile the other organization is discredited for extravagance, and the vacancies may be fliled at leisure. Of course we may be doing Mr. Gilroy an iniustice, and he may be actuated by pure zeal for the oppressed taxpayer. If he will show tts a year hence that the salary list in his department remains .^50,000 less than it was before he made the reduction we will cheer¬ fully acknowledge the injustice, though we scarcely think such a showing will increase his popularity in the "organization," It must be owned that Mayor Grant has a practical way of effecting his objects. He showed tliis in the matter of the electric wu-es, after it had been dandled with until everybody was tired of it. He has gone about the securing of the Sunday opening of the museums in the same way. The Museum of Natural History wants $400,000 from the city for the bnilding of a new wing. On the official visit of the Board of Estimate to the Museum, the Mayor is said to have expressed himself against the grant of any money to the Museum unless it were opened to the public on Sunday, If he can persuade the Board of Estimate to take this view, the trustees of the Museum will doubtless examine their scruples against Sun¬ day openings more carefully than they have done before. Practi¬ cally the choice offered to New Yorkers, who find their own dwell¬ ings or those of their acquaintances tiresome on Sunday during the season when suburban excursions are not available, is between the churches and the saloons. Nobody who opposes the Sunday open¬ ing would maintain that a man was not better engaged on Sunday in a museum than in a saloon. Such a person would doubtless insist that everybody should go to church, but everybody will not, and nobody can attend church all day. Moreover, it is not the most touching tribute to religious services that more people might go to them if all the other places were shut up. The Sunday opening cannot be very long delayed, and the Mayor has very likely done sometbing to hasten it by his declaration. The movement which was started a year or two ago in England by the conversion of sorae of the largest beer and ale breweries into joint stock companies has extended itself to this country and has made great progress. Continually we are hearing of great breweries that have been capitalized at enormous sums and passed into the hands of English syndicates. So apparent has been the process that some of our sturdy Irish-Americans have become alarmed and have agreed to abstain from the beer, be it good or bad, that is made by these foreign capitahsts. The St. Louis beer manufacturers, according to the papers, ai-e so far the only ones who have received a good offer and rejected it. If the move¬ ment continues some sort of a beer trust will not be an unlikely consummation, for the capital engaged in the manufacture of this drink wili then be imder the control of men who are not opposed to each other. As many of our beermakers are and have been, and hence will be, very hable to concentration, a beer trust, it must be remembered, would have a very good chance of success, for the manufactm-ers practically control the retailers, through mortgages on their fixtures. The result of this movement will be worth watching. Mayor Grant has visited Riverside Park, and taken that and the water front below it into consideration. It may now be expected that this work will go on. His attention was particularly drawn to the business value of the river and tbe need of other connections with the upland, and he is reported to have censured the Park Department for filling in at 86tb street, and taking away |the old stau-way to the river shore. He should have been told that River¬ side Drive, except this section of 86th street, had been completed ma.ny years, and that the assessment for the whole work could not be laid till the Drive was completed, and that for this reason the work was done. There is a limit to the busiuess uses of the water front. The region between the Central and Riverside Parks is three miles long, about half a mile wide and about 80 to 100 feet high above tbe river. It is cleai-ly destined to be a residence and not a business section. It is about one-fourth covered with build¬ ings, and thepresent accommodations have been sufficient to supply building materials. It has access to the river at 79th, 9Gth aud 139th streets, w^hich seems sufficient for the purposes of a region of dwelling houses. In tbis it differs from the lower portions of .the city, adjacent to the Hudson River, which are ahnost wholly giveu over to business. The business location on the upper end of the island will be along the low banks of the Harlem River and at its intersection with the East River. But the great business use of the Hudson River shore, beneath the Riverside cliff, will be for storage and transportation to the interior. Beyond the Hudson River Rail¬ road line, the ISth avenue has been laid out 7o feet wide, and from