Power returns to much of Lower Manhattan

Big chunks of blackout-plagued Manhattan have gotten their power back this evening.

Con Edison says the lights went back on around 5 p.m. for around 65,000 homes, apartment buildings and businesses on the Lower East Side and in the East Village.

The utility says it still can't give a timetable for when service would be back for the rest of the area.

Much of the southern third of Manhattan has been dark since Monday evening.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg said at a midday news conference that he hoped power would be restored to most of the borough by midnight.

Con Edison says it is trying to meet that deadline. However, power must be brought back slowly to avoid burnouts, fires and overloads in the system.