Alphabet City Review
The north-south avenues east of 1st Avenue, from Houston Street to 14th Street, are all labeled with letters, not numbers, which gives this area its nickname. Avenues A, B, and C are full of restaurants, cafés, stores, and bars that run from the low-rent and scruffy to the rarified and genteel—the streets are more mixed than in other neighborhoods downtown. Parts of Avenues A and B run along Tompkins Square park. A close-knit Puerto Rican community makes its home around Avenue C, also called Loisaida Avenue (a Spanglish creation meaning "Lower East Side"). Although it's still filled with many Latino shops and bodegas, it's also now home to some trendy restaurants and bars. Avenue D remains rough around the edges—in part because of the uninterrupted row of projects that are on its east side. The East River Park, farther east, provides some nice views of Williamsburg and other parts of Brooklyn. To reach the park, cross Avenue D and take one of the pedestrian bridges that crosses the FDR Drive at East 10th or East 5th Streets, or cross the road at East Houston Street.
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