Last Friday, we published quite the reader rant about the unavailability of the roof deck at the Greenwich Club Residences, the rental-to-condo conversion at 88 Greenwich Street in the Financial District. Among the writer's claims: that a building rep "cheerfully informed me that the deck would be closed indefinitely, and for sure would not be open at all over this summer." Turns out, as a set of photos to our inbox shows, that's actually not the case. Herewith, the full reveal on the Greenwich Club's recent roofdeck opening, including an epic reader email that neatly dissects our abject stupidity, plus another photo of the fun.
First up, and printed here in its entirety, a reader who, shall we say, took issue with our post on Friday:
A Swing and a Miss for Curbed
In a classic example of unprofessional journalism, Curbed has struck out on its latest “tip”. On Friday, an anonymous Curbed “tipster” fed the blog breaking news that the roof deck at one of Manhattan’s top condos is closed and “for sure would not be open at all over this summer.” This will surely come as a surprise to the owner who reserved the roof deck and adjoining lounge to host his engagement party that very evening. Or to the many owners who filled the roof deck this past weekend to take in the great weather the city has been waiting for.
Curbed was notified immediately that the subject of their posting was incorrect, yet they stated that their policy is to never remove items that have been posted. It does not matter if they find out that they have posted false information that is unjustly harmful to others, they will not remove it. Curiously, this is true not only with their links to other publications but also with their own reporting. The only course available to voice objections is to provide a written statement, they state.
Without explanation, Curbed chose to publish an anonymous “rant” from a resident that contained uninteresting and false information. Furthermore, Curbed identifies the source of the information as a doorman that this resident spoke to. They made no attempt to confirm the accuracy of the information before posting it, electing to neither contact management for confirmation nor to send an employee down to the building to check for themselves. Such conduct is contrary to the basic standards of journalism which any respectable publication presumably chooses to uphold, particularly before posting smears that would have very little substance even had they been true.
By posting this random, harmful rant, Curbed appears to agree with the poster’s desire to “warn” people about the building. Again, an interesting choice on Curbed’s part, considering their confirmation that none of their employees have ever been to the building. As soon as they find time to make it down, they will surely be surprised when they see what has been widely recognized by real estate professionals and residents of the neighborhood as one of downtown’s top condominium developments, with spectacular (and completed) common areas and beautiful residences. This is further confirmed by Curbed’s “tipster,” who states that 88 Greenwich is “a really beautiful building with lots of amenities.”
The “tipster” also points out that “residents are pretty much in open revolt” against management. The poster’s misleading statement actually refers to a small handful of frivolous owners who have drawn the ire of hundreds of owners for inexplicably working to diminish the value of their own investments. These owners have alienated virtually everyone whose support and money they’ve tried to solicit, and it is unwarranted for Curbed to spread their misinformation so recklessly.
With respect to the roof deck, it had previously been closed while façade work was being done to the building’s north side, as cables for the scaffolding used for these repairs were fastened to sections of it. Part of this cabling is still in place. In order to reopen the roof deck in time for the months of its peak usage, however, building management and the scaffolding company repositioned the cabling on Wednesday and Thursday to facilitate the opening of the deck. The outdoor furniture, which is stored indoors ever winter, was then retrieved, allowing the building to reopen the deck well before its goal of May 1st. Curbed reported that the roof deck would be closed through the summer while it was torn up and resurfaced, another factually incorrect claim.
Curbed proudly ends the post by joking, “Hey, who’s on deck for 88 Greenwich? Nobody!” Apparently, the question is really... “Hey, who’s responsible for honest reporting and fact-checking at Curbed? NOBODY!!!” Nice work guys. The joke’s on you.
Meantime, our original tipster follows up, too:
Hey - amazingly enough, a few hours after your story ran, this message was in my inbox regarding the deck at 88 Greenwich (below), and when I got home from work and looked out my window onto the deck, suddenly chaise lounges appeared and barricades were rearranged -- more activity than there has been in several months, in fact. I'd like to chalk this up to coincidence, but I'm fairly certain it has more to do with the bad press from your site. Thanks for doing this story!
Sent: Fri Apr 24 16:59:14 2009
Subject: Greenwich Club Residences - Sky Deck Update
Friday, April 24, 2009
RE: Greenwich Club Residences - Sky Deck Update
Just in time for the beautiful weather...the Sky Deck is now open! For your protection, two small sections will be cautioned off while facade repairs are underway, which will still allow you use of the Sky Deck.
So. To set the record straight: the roofdeck at the Greenwich Club Residences is indeed (mostly) open and looks positively relaxing. FiDi, go crazy.