Mark Lamster | Essays

A Tour of City Hall in the Waning Hours of the Bloomberg Administration

Pictured above is the City Hall desk of Michael Bloomberg, roughly 60 hours before the conclusion of his twelve year term as the Mayor of the City of New York. As the box suggests, the departure process has already begun.

You can approve of his performance or you can lament it, but there is little question he has been an effective manager, working from this distinctly unceremonial open-plan space, known as the "bullpen," surrounded by aides and deputies. His desk is no different than any other—not even an Aeron chair. 

With a hard rain coming down outside, a few stray staffers packing, and the lights mostly off this afternoon, the historic building was possessed of a lonely and melancholy air befitting the end of an era. Bloomberg took office at one of the lowest moments in the city's history; he departs from a place he has remade as no other figure since Robert Moses. 

Next week, a new resident will come in and the lights will come on and the furniture will be rearranged. What will his desk look like, and how long will he sit at it? The city waits. 

Jobs | June 13