The Briefly for July 16, 2019 – The “No One Knows What Caused the Blackout” Edition

ConEd is not untouchable, the Queens DA race is giving Bush v Gore vibes, the best restaurants in the East Village, the ice cream wars of Dumbo have begun, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

Deep below the Flatiron Building, there’s an unused coal-fueled power plant that pre-dates the building’s steam systems. You probably will never get a personal tour of it, so experiencing it through this photo gallery is the closest you’ll get. (Untapped Cities)

The pizza wars of Dumbo continue on, but the ice cream war between Ample Hills and the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory are only just beginning. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

Want to prepare for the next (inevitable) blackout? Here’s a list of six things you can do to get yourself ready. (Curbed)

Why are so many of the escalators in the new Q train subway stations broken so often? Don’t ask the MTA, because they can’t figure it out. (amNY)

Put ConEd down in the same category as the MTA, because they can’t seem to get their story straight about what caused this blackout. (NY Times)

Governor Cuomo appears to be sick of ConEd’s shit between this outage, the fire in Astoria that lit the sky, and transformer fires in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn, and he’s open to replacing them. (Gothamist)

How has ConEd responded to this massive outage? By making a public statement that the heat this week could cause more outages. Lovely. (Huff Post)

The cost of the blackout was $3.5 on Broadway alone, with 26 of 30 possible performances being canceled. Saturday in July is Broadway’s most popular night in the most popular month. (NY Times)

A brief history of blackouts in New York City. (amNY)

The NYPD won’t share details about an off-duty Queens cop who was arrested on charges of false imprisonment and assault, calling it a “confidential investigation” while flagrantly showing the NYPD’s “fundamental and pervasive lack of transparency,” as cited in a report earlier this year. (Gothamist)

From romantic to the club to sporty to outdoors: where to go for date night in Astoria. (We Heart Astoria)

Staten Island politicians are urging the governor to start a “microtransit” pilot program to expand transit options throughout the city’s largest borough. Microtransit refers to buses and not alternative modes of transportation, as Staten Island remains a borough without any bike lanes. (Curbed)

With Jeff Bezos buying a Manhattan apartment, protestors of Amazon have a new target to make their voices heard. (Patch)

It seemed the public call for volunteers worked, the Giglio Lift went off without a hitch last weekend, which is the largest of the lifts during Williamsburg’s Giglio Feast. The feast continues through the weekend with more lifts on Wednesday and Sunday nights. (Gothamist)

There is a fight for survival happening all around us, as invasive species are threatening the city’s flora. The problem is only a biodiversity one, but fighting invasive bugs and plants can be costly. The treatment and removal of ash trees due to a beetle infestation will cost the city nearly $10 million over three years. (amNY)

What’s the latest on the Mandarin Duck? He seems to have left the city a few months ago and we should expect him back after the summer. Ducks molt in the summer and while they’re flightless they look for safer and more private bodies of water. (Gothamist)

Residents of the financial district are trying to get the city to pump the brakes before construction begins on the last building in the World Trade Center in an attempt to keep the project selection process fair and to ensure the neighborhood benefits from another massive construction project. (amNY)

Photos from the Queens DA primary recount is giving off major Bush v Gore vibes. (NY Times)

The next expansions of CitiBike’s coverage will be painfully slow. The current roll-out will take until 2023– the service’s decade anniversary– to complete. (Streetsblog)

The statue outside of the Museum of Natural History of Teddy Roosevelt atop a horse, flanked by an African-American and a Native American was one of the monuments the city was reconsidered in 2017. The statue has attracted negative attention for Roosevelt’s racist views and statements about Native Americans and Africans and has been the target of protest multiple times since installation in 1940. The museum is leaning into controversy by highlighting the criticism of the statue and of the museum’s history to complicate and contextualize without glorification. (NY Times)

The best restaurants in the East Village. (The infatuation)

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The Briefly for July 11, 2019 – The “A Love Letter to the Salt Bagel” Weekend Edition

Fighting this weekend’s planned ICE raids, more people are staying put in Brooklyn and Queens, the city’s speed camera program starts to expand and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The president’s ICE raids scheduled to take place this weekend have included New York as a target. The governor announced anyone in need of assistance may contact the Liberty Defense Project via the New York State New Americans Hotline at 1-800-566-7636 or liberty@dos.ny.gov.

What should you do if ICE is at your door or the door of someone you know? Here are the ACLU’s guidelines and outlines of your rights. (ACLU)

The Amazon Web Services Summit at the Javitz Center drew crowds protesting Amazon’s involvement with ICE with their Rekognition Video system. (amNY)

Riding the subway still sucks, but it sucks the least its sucked since 2013, with an on-time performance over 80%. (Curbed)

Check the trains before you venture out this weekend. This is the last weekend of reduced L train service before the multi-week night and weekend partial shutdown starts and remains through January. (Subway Weekender)

R. Kelly was arrested by the NYPD and Homeland Security in Chicago on federal sex trafficking charges and is expected to be brought to New York to face those charges. (NBC New York)

A love letter to the salt bagel. (Eater)

The NYPD claims to have figured out the reason for an uptick of shootings in northern Brooklyn: District Attorney Eric Gonzalez. The NYPD is blaming a program where weapons-possession offenders can plead guilty and take part in an educational program instead of being jailed. Putting the blame on this program has two flaws. The program is a decade old, the uptick in shootings are only in one portion of the borough while the program is borough-wide, and it does not apply to anyone who has used a gun, only those possessing them. (Brooklyn Paper)

Have mannequin, will carpool. A hero from New Jersey was pulled over on the Verrazzano Bridge for trying to using his “friend” as a reason to use the HOV lane. (Gothamist)

The photos your friends post to Instagram from Storm King are nice and all, but have you thought about who’s job it is to mow the grass? Meet Mike Seaman, who leads a seven-person crew. (NY Times)

Much like Williamsburg, the neighborhood it calls home, the Feast of Our Lady Mount Carmel and San Paolino di Nola is changing with the times. For the first time organizers opened up the carrying of the giglio, a four-ton and 72-foot-tall spire, and a life-size sculpture of a boat, to outsiders. This Sunday is giglio Sunday. (NY Times)

Irving Plaza is closed for eight months to be renovated. (EV Grieve)

The city provides about 146 square feet of green space per resident, which is smaller than a 12 foot by 12-foot room. Of the fifteen major cities in the story, New York was dead last. (Patch)

Speaking of green space, Shirley Chisholm State Park can lay claim to the title of “the city’s nicest park built on top of a toxic dump.” (Curbed)

In reflection of its 20th year, Untapped Cities sat down with Friends of the High Line co-founder Robert Hammond to discuss his favorite places in the city, future public projects, the Spur, and more. (Untapped Cities)

The latest step in a neighbor-feud in Kew Gardens is a bloody splattered mannequin who seems to be daring neighbors to call 311 against it. A truly amazing amount of pettiness. (Gothamist)

The expansion of the city’s speed camera program kicked off this week. The city will add 40-60 cameras a month until the number reaches 750 from the current 140. (Curbed)

“Slave Play,” a look at race relations through the prism of the sexual hangups of three interracial couples, is coming to Broadway this spring and will run for 17 weeks. (NY Times)

The reunited The Misfits announced their first-ever show at Madison Square Garden, tickets are on sale next week. (BrooklynVegan)

How Darren Walker, a gay black man who grew up poor in Texas, came to be one of the best-connected people in New York City. And what that means for the future of philanthropy. (NY Times)

A photo gallery of Coney Island through the years. (amNY)

The Parks Department publicly apologized to the family of Robert Sommer, who was one of the fifteen cyclists killed by drivers this year, for removing his memorial ghost bike in Marine Park without notifying his family first. (Brooklyn Paper)

Would you pay $275 to be a guest on a podcast? Say what you want, but it’s working for Uluç Ülgen, the host of mürmur, a podcast that is “part performance art, part social documentary, part mystical, and part comedy.” If you don’t want to pay the fee to appear, you can always subscribe on iTunes. (Bedford + Bowery)

A taxi jumped the curb and crashed into a Westville in Hell’s Kitchen on Ninth Avenue Westville. Five people were hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries and three declined medical attention. No reason was released for the driver’s actions. (Gothamist)

The Washington Square Park “Die-In” to bring attention to the crisis created by the failures of the mayor’s Vision Zero program has worked. Nearly every media outlet in the city has written about it, and it has now received the New York Times treatment. (NY Times)

More and more people in Brooklyn and Queens are choosing to renew their leases instead of moving to new apartments. Rants in both boroughs are up, but rents in Queens are down 4.2% since May. (The Real Deal)

Mia Simmons, the 20-year-old woman charged with manslaughter for the stabbing death of 30-year-old Latanya Watson, was defending herself according to her lawyer. Video footage shows the pair fighting on the platform and Simmons’s lawyer claims Watson was the aggressor. (Gothamist)

An Ed Sheeran pop-up shop will be open on Wooster Street today from 3:06 through 9:06. Now you know where to go or where to avoid, depending who you are. (amNY)

Say hello to the Carrot Dog, the humane twist on the New York staple, which are now available ay by CHLOE. Delightful, disgusting, or both? (Gothamist)

Whoops, the Time Out Market in Dumbo was shut down by the Department of Health. The food hall is expected to be reopened shortly. (Eater)

The MTA’s rules restrict the kinds of secondary jobs its workers can hold, which three dozen violated by moonlighting as Lyft /Uber drivers without agency permission. Five were fired. (Patch)

The governor won’t sign a bill that would loosen restrictions on affidavit ballots that would also retroactively decide the contested Queens DA race. (Jackson Heights Post)

After the arrest of Tyresse Singleton for the alleged burning of rainbow flags outside the Alibi Lounge in Harlem, a new set of flags are proudly waving. (amNY)

A look inside the bribery and corruption of two men who are partially responsible for the current taxi medallion financial crisis. (NY Times)

Everyone has a friend who always chooses the most expensive restaurant possible and the bill for the eight of you looks like someone’s rent instead of a bill for the meal. That’s the inspiration behind the list of the best restaurants for affordable group dinners. (The Infatuation)

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The Briefly for June 3, 2019 – The “Albany May Fail to Pass Gay and Trans Panic Ban for Pride” Edition

Moishe’s gets a new life, pre-K workers get a new deal, 57 early voting sites selected, the 25 most expensive homes for sale in the city, Anthony Bourdain day will be June 25, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

Wu-Tang Ain’t Nothing To Fur With. (Patch)

Two bills that would ban the gay and trans panic defense (where a legal defense claiming someone else being LGBTQ caused them “extreme emotional disturbance”) are in danger of not passing in the legislature. It’s astounding that anything gets done in Albany. (Gothamist)

The city’s public defenders are demanding a raise, noting that the low pay from their job often forces them to get a second job to make ends meet. They are asking for $50 million to at least be on par with attorneys in the city’s Office of Corporate Counsel. The responsibility to allocate the funds belongs to our mayor, who would rather traipse around the country, pretending to be a presidential candidate. (Patch)

They start at $48 million. The 25 most expensive apartments in NYC. (Curbed)

What do you get with an $85 million home? For starters, two tickets to space. (Gothamist)

What to do and where to eat in Morris Park, east of the Bronx Zoo. (amNY)

Moishe’s Bake Shop, which has had more lives than a feral cat, will reopen after renovations are complete under new management and may potentially change the name to ‘Formerly Moishe’s’. (EV Grieve)

With Amazon searching for office space in Manhattan, it certainly seems that they didn’t need billions of dollars in tax incentives. There should be a lesson in there, but let’s not get our hopes up. (Slate)

George Catalano, the man caught on video attacking a Lyft driver, surrendered himself to the NYPD for reckless endangerment and assault. (Gothamist)

Chefs Eric Ripert and José Andrés announced a day of remembrance on June 25 to celebrate the life of the late, great Anthony Bourdain. (Grub Street)

Fordham University’s Rose Hill campus is home to the oldest seismic station in the United States. (Atlas Obscura)

Robin Russell-French has a bunch of walls and a desire to create the city’s next 5 Pointz. Will it be enough to lure artists to Sheepshead Bay? (Viewing NYC)

39 places for an outside date night. (The Infatuation)

What says “city park” quite like “mass gravesite with a million corpses buried by prisoners“? (6sqft)

Isaiah Thompson, the subway brake bandit, was charged with reckless endangerment and criminal trespass for creating 747 subway delay between March and May, add public lewdness charges to the pile for exposing himself to a platform of people in mid-May. (Gothamist)

The city is making changes to how pre-k teachers and childcare providers as paid, avoiding a strike. Pre-K for all is one of the mayor’s pet projects. (Chalkbeat)

The pros and cons of living in a doorman building. (StreetEasy)

The DailyMeal’s 75 best hole-in-the-wall restaurants include 21 from NYC. Highlights range from some unconventional picks to pizza staples to NYC standards. (Patch)

The West Village’s Barbuto is closed after fifteen years. This time rent is not to blame, it’s the new owner of the building who does not want a restaurant in that space. (Eater)

A veteran NYPD officer pleaded not guilty to charges that she schemed to murder her estranged husband and the young daughter of her boyfriend. (amNY)

The city’s Board of Elections added 57 early voting sites across the city, which still falls short of the 100 sites proposed by the mayor. Early voting for this fall’s election starts October 26. (Patch)

A look at the proposed BQX streetcar in its current proposed form. (amNY)

Can Sunset Park hold on to its manufacturing roots as the neighborhood is gentrifying? (Gothamist)

Mya Vizcarrondo-Rios jumped to her death from the roof of her Bronx apartment building in February after being bullied and sexually harassed by other students. A lawsuit from her parents claims the school regularly ignored her complaints. Members of the City Council are calling for a probe into what went wrong. (Patch)

The Brooklyn Jewish Children’s Museum has an interactive display wall outside the museum in Crown Heights and the NYPD’s Hate Crime Unit is investigating a message left on the wall stating “Hitler is coming.” (Gothamist)

Times Square is getting an pop-up Museum of Broadway in 2020. (amNY)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez worked as a waitress and bartender in a staged event at the Queensboro in Jackson Heights in support of a fair wage for tipped workers. (NY Times)

The case that Brad Lander, who represents Gowanus on the City Council, is making a bad faith promise with the rezoning around the Gowanus Canal. (Pardon Me For Asking)

13 new outdoor art installations not to miss in June. (Untapped Cities)

New Yorkers have never been shy about cursing in public. (Viewing NYC)

17 tropical restaurants and bars that feel like a vacation. (Eater)

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