Friday, June 22, 2007

Apartment Stoop

This photo of an urban (or apartment) stoop was taken yesterday when I was in the Village to catch a documentary movie about Canadian photographer, Edward Burtynsky at the Film Forum. Because of my perfect train connections, I arrived at the movie theater super early so I decided to walk around the neighborhood and take some pictures.

According to Wikipedia, an urban stoop is a short stairwell leading up to the entrance of a townhouse or an apartment building. The architecture was originally brought to New York City by Dutch settlers during the colonial times. Even the word, stoop comes from the Dutch word stoep, which meaning "small porch".

Socially, the stoop played an important part in New York City life. Residents used to hang out here to enjoy the fresh air and socialize with the neighbors and friends. But due to gentrification, increasing busy life styles and air-conditioning & heating in the apartments, such activities have diminished to a minimum. Most people now prefer to meet at restaurants and cafes instead.

So where do you usually meet your friends or non-immediate families for social interactions?