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Queens Chronicle

Light visioning tour of Roosevelt Ave.

Noted designer leads July 26 event

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Posted: Thursday, July 18, 2013 10:30 am

The urban light designer who helped illuminate the dismal Port Authority bus ramps, bring more invigorating light to Time Square’s pedestrian plaza and appropriately accent Bryant Park, will lead a public tour and workshop of Roosevelt Avenue.

Leni Schwendinger will take a group — anyone is invited — on a walking tour called NightSeeing under the No. 7 train to the high 80s and along 82nd Street on July 26 from 8 to 10 p.m.

“My hope is that NightSeeing participants will first of all get to know new neighbors, and each other, better in the context of an educational, after-dark experience,” Schwendinger said. “Secondly, they will come away with a fresh look at their own community’s luminous environment and from there gain the ability to describe their nighttime experience and wishes for improvement.”

Schwendinger walked the district a few times in the rain and in the heat with 82nd Street Partnership Executive Director Seth Taylor and a few times measuring light levels and noting additional lighting fixtures that add to the city’s required lighting.

“I think the area deserves creative applications of light to match the incredible diversity of cultures — perhaps acting as an innovative public translator between them,” she said.

The project is in conjunction with the 82nd Street Partnership, the business improvement district that currently encompasses two blocks of 82nd Street on either side of Roosevelt, but is in the process of expanding up the avenue to 114th Street.

NightSeeing begins at the Jackson Heights Cinema at 40-31 82nd St.

The day after the tour Schwendinger and the Partnership will host a workshop from 1 to 3 p.m. at 37-44 82nd St. on the second floor.

Schwendinger will take ideas from the forum and submit a lighting proposal, which the partnership will consider when applying for grants.

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