The Briefly for January 15, 2019 – The “8% Rate of Success” Edition

Early voting passes the state legislature, Governor Cuomo thinks the city should foot half the bill for the subway, the best winter brunches, the Amazon-Chrysler building, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

10 short interviews about congestion pricing with state legislators. (Streetsblog)

The annual No Pants Subway Ride happened. There are photos. (Gothamist)

Voting reform passed the state legislature, which adds 10 days of early voting, consolidates state and federal primary dates, and pre-registers 17 and 17-year-olds when they sign up for a driving permit. A constitutional amendment was proposed that will allow same-day voter registration and allow anyone to vote absentee without an excuse.(CBS New York)

Signal problems caused delays during 92% of weekdays in 2018. Since the city enacted the Subway Action Plan, delays have increased. (Daily News)

The state is doubling the amount of speed cameras in the city’s school zones as part of Governor Cuomo’s state budget, increasing from 149 to 290, which matches the number of cameras the state’s legislature was trying to pass last year. (Streetsblog)

The best winter brunch spots. (Thrillist)

This is why we can’t have nice things. The city is suing Metropolitan Property Group for running an illegal Airbnb network in 130 apartments, which housing more than 75,000 guests from 2015 to 2018. (The Real Deal)

Okay, so “Amazon” is the new default answer for any question, but who will be the Chrysler Building’s new tenant? Yup, Amazon. (6sqft)

Here’s what to know about the city’s new, updated and existing ferry routes. (amNY)

Meet Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the the Metropolitan Opera new openly gay conductor. (NY Times)

Say farewell to Westsider Books on Broadway in the Upper West Side. Not every closing bookstore has a Lin-Manuel Miranda. (West Side Rag)

“Being from Staten Island gives you that ability to brush it off.” Being from Staten Island made the cast of MTV’s “Made in Staten Island” immune to criticism that they are tarnishing the pristine public image of Staten Island. (amNY)

The secret economy of diabetes test strips. (NY Times)

Everyone wants to be the one that fixes the subways, but no one wants to pay for it. (NY Post)

Do you have what it takes to drink this $375, 20 pound spiked hot chocolate? (Time Out)

Five things to look for in today’s state budget address today (Tuesday). (amNY)

The Port Authority removed the Saudi Arabia part of the “Candy Nations” art installation due to its proximity to the World Trade Center due to complains that point out the Saudi connection to the 9/11 attacks. (NY Post)

JFK and Laguardia airports have been providing food to TSA and Federal Aviation Administration workers while they aren’t paid during President Trump’s government shutdown. (Airport Voice)

The government shutdown means no family visiting at Metropolitan Correctional Center, the high-security federal jail in Manhattan that houses terrorists, white-collar criminals, and El Chapo. Prisoners are on a hunger strike after the second week of canceled visits due to staffing shortages. (NY Times)

Turns out a plan similar to governor Cuomo’s new L train non-shutdown was considered and rejected five years ago because of serious safety concerns. (NY Times)

He can decide the L train shutdown isn’t happening and declare emergency meetings of the MTA board, but Governor Cuomo still claims that he’s not in charge of the MTA. (Second Ave. Sagas)

The person handpicked by Mayor de Blasio to head up his BQX streetcar project left the United States for a new job in Saudi Arabia. (Politico)

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The Briefly for January 14, 2019 – The “Watch the Skies for the Brown Plague” Edition

Amazon HQ2 is the city’s new ATM, Chinatown Fair gets the NY Times treatment, Cuomo wants to ban plastic bags, roll your eyes at Janeane Garofalo, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

This week’s overnight subway changes are minimal, but will still hit hard if you need the 7 between Queens and Manhattan or one of the other 6 lines with changes. (Subway Changes)

Janeane Garofalo: 2019’s Chris Crocker. (BrooklynVegan)

How will Mayor de Blasio pay for his $100 million health care expansion? The city and state’s latest theoretical ATM, Amazon HQ2. (NY Post)

Who is responsible for the L train shutdown fiasco? Anyone and everyone. (NY Times)

If you had to choose a coffin shaped like one NYC landmark, which would you choose? (Untapped Cities)

“You hear ‘splat’ and then you get the brown plague.” Don’t throw your dirty diapers out your apartment windows. (NY Post)

It’s a public art installation and it’s also a depressing statement about our impact on the environment. “Iceberg” is on Broadway between W37th and W 38th. (6sqft)

The 20 best happy hours in the city. (Thrillist)

The 167th St B/D station is open, including the glass mosaic “Beacons,” by artist Rico Gatson, showing off portraits of former residents of the neighborhood like Celia Cruz, Sonia Sotomayor, and Maya Angelou. (MTA)

This $45 million apartment might seem expensive, but that was after $70 million of discounts! (6sqft)

The MTA has no problem with subway ads for boner pills, so what’s the deal with Dame Products’ ad ban? Hard to not see this as sexist garbage. (Bedford + Bowery)

The City Council’s new bill that mandates all city school buses be equipped with GPS devices that will give parents real-time information on where their children are at any given moment via an app. During November’s snow storm, some special education children were stuck on a bus for over 10 hours. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

Staten Islanders are upset that MTV’s “Made In Staten Island” makes them look like a “cesspool of gangsters and meatheads.” Draw your own conclusions. (Gothamist)

Not all heroes wear capes. Some, like Taylor Mali and his Snatchelator, are just dads from Carroll Gardens who are fed up with plastic bags in trees. (Pardon Me for Asking)

Forget Oreo Squirrel, long live Water Fountain Pigeon!

The Highline Ballroom will close in February after 12 years. (Time Out)

Crown Height’s fake bullet hole bar, Summerhill BK, is closed and is planning a re-brand. (Eater)

The greatest race made for-idiots/by-idiots, the Idiotarod, is scheduled for January 26. Mark your calendars, idiots. (Gothamist)

It takes seven and a half minutes for emergency responders to arrive if you have a heart attack in Manhattan, thanks to a shortage of FDNY paramedics and EMTs. Jersey City’s mayor has an Uber-style solution to cut that time down dramatically. (NY Post)

What makes New York pizza superior to Detroit pizza, Rhode Island pizza, or Chicago pizza? Is it the water? (StreetEasy)

It’s the responsibility of individuals, and not the city, to shovel the sidewalks. Here’s why that’s wrong. (CityLab)

After nearly 50 years, Souen in Soho is closing. (Eater)

A new study shows that NY schools are not safe for LGBTQ children. The Gay and Lesbian Straight Education Network’s study shows that students lack an inclusive curriculum, protective policies and 90% of LGBTQ students face discrimination. (NY Post)

The mayor is not ruling out a run at the presidency. (Politico)

Get ready to kiss plastic bags goodbye. (NY Post)

Chinatown Fair has defied the odds since the 1940s and stands as Manhattan’s last original video arcade. (NY Times)

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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.

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)

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