From this weekend's NY Times, an article about the up and coming Bowery, or wait, its no longer up and coming. A slideshow is here. Interesting that they mention a time before The Bowery was the skids, when it was quite fashionable.
New NY Times Magazine article explaining the rise and fall of architect Robert Scarano. Note the information about 4 East 3rd street, which went from a gas station to a 16 story tower which eventually was converted into the Bowery Hotel.