The Briefly for January 11, 2019 – The “Long On Promises, Short On Details” Edition

A closer look at the State of the City, “Rhode Island-style” pizza, election reform, UCB East is closing, a “bike mayor” for the city, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

An Old School New York Way to Send A Message

This weekend’s scheduled subway service changes: The 5 is gonna be super slow, the 7, J and M trains are out between Queens and Manhattan, and that’s just the start of it. (6sqft)


Mayor Bill de Blasio’s 2019 State of the City address highlights:

Watch the 2019 State of the City address given by Mayor Bill de Blasio

Five takeaways from the State of the City. (NY Times)

“Plenty of money in the city. It’s just in the wrong hands!” The mayor preached distribution of wealth, came up short on the details. (NY Times)

The speech was focused on equality, workers and tenants’ rights, and income inequality, to go “bigger, bolder, and aim higher.” (Politico)

The city’s free 3-K program will expand to districts 6, 8, 9, 19 and 32. (Bklyner)

Bus speeds should increase 25% by the end of 2020 from 7.44 to 9.03 mph. Some tactics will be adding between 10 and 15 miles of dedicated lanes, revamp five miles, and installing barriers to protect bus lanes from drivers. The NYPD will also add a team of tow truck drivers dedicated to clearing bus lanes. (amNY)

New and modified ferry routes: Staten Island will be connected to Battery Park and W 39th Street and a new Coney Island line will stop at Bay Ridge on its way to Wall Street. The Soundview, South Brooklyn and Astoria routes will be expanded. (Curbed)

The mayor created the Office of Tenant Protection, whose details were long on promises and short on details. The office will seize the buildings of the city’s “worst landlords,” which is an interesting phrase considering the worst landlord in the city was recently declared to be… the city. (The Real Deal & Curbed)

Free eyeglasses will be provided to kindergarteners or first graders need them starting next school year in a partnership with Warby Parker. (Chalkbeat)

While the mayor touted successes on old pledges like the styrofoam ban and a plan to divest the city’s pensions from fossil fuels, there was no plans for new green initiatives. (Politico)

Also missing? The NYCHA crisis. (Gotham Gazette)


Albany is looking to make some sense out of our state’s elections, limiting donations from LLCs, create early voting, combining election days, voting by affidavit, and pre-registering to vote at the age of 16. (Politico)

The modernist treasures of Queens. (Curbed)

A Bike Mayor? Transportation Alternatives has a petition looking to add the position to champion cycling across city agencies. Is it any more odd than a “Night Mayor?” (Streetsblog)

The average jail population in the city is at its lowest since 1980. (Daily News)

UCB will close their East Village theater on February 9 amid financial problems. Some shows will be moved to SubCulture. (Vulture)

LIRR will begin service to Grand Central Terminal by the end of 2022. (6sqft)

The secrets of the St. Marks historic district. (6sqft)

The most dangerous neighborhood to walk in Queens? Flushing. (Streetsblog)

Okay, what the hell is “Rhode Island-style” pizza? (Bedford + Bowery)

A teacher who was fired for allegedly forcing black students to lie on the floor while she stepped on their backs is planning on suing the city for one billion dollars. (NY Post)

The 15 most anticipated restaurant openings this winter. (Eater)

Get your photo featured or suggest stories for The Briefly by responding to this email or tagging your NYC photos and news on Instagram or Twitter with #thebriefly.