The Briefly for January 13, 2019 – The “Caught Speeding Without Consequence” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Fingers start pointing over Book Culture’s closure, a tribute to Bowie, the NYC Bar Association calls for an investigation of William Barr, and more

Today – Low: 37˚ High: 48˚
Overcast throughout the day.

A water main broke near Lincoln Center, causing flooding and train delays between 96th and Tims Square on the Upper West Side. (@tomkaminskiwcbs)

A timeline of the incidents that caused 300 subway cars to be pulled from the MTA’s fleet last week. The cars are sidelined “indefinitely.” (Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

The biggest Harry Potter store in the world is opening in the city this summer in the former Restoration Hardware in Flatiron. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Warner Brothers asked Manhattan’s Community Board 5 if it could install a dragon on the facade of the 19 century building to a frosty reception. (Dennis Lynch for The Real Deal)

If you want to apply to join your Community Board in Manhattan, the deadline is coming up. Make sure to have your application postmarked by the 21st. (Holly Louise Perry for Bowery Boogie)

The Reckless Driver Accountability Act was introduced in 2018. The bill would boot or impound the cars of anyone who received five or more red light or speed camera violations in a year until an accountability program was completed. Since its introduction, 362 have been killed on the city’s roads. What is the holdup in City Council? (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

The city’s speed cameras caught cabs speeding 117,042 times in 2019. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

An argument to dissolve the city’s Economic Development Corporation, represented by its 27 member unelected board appointed by the mayor and has an oversized amount of influence on the city’s direction. (Emily Sharp for Queens Eagle)

Photos: The 2020 No Pants Subway Ride. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork)

Net neutrality, consumer protections, women’s equity, and more of 16 notable proposals not included in Governor Cuomo’s State of the State speech. (Samir Khurshid for Gotham Gazette)

“If we’re going to discuss gun safety, what’s a nautical themed way to make a nod toward that?” An interview with the artist who helped create the masterpiece that is Governor Cuomo’s fever dream poster. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Central Park’s Sheep Meadow earned that nickname, giving a home to about 200 sheep up through the 1930’s, as part of Olmstead and Vaux’s original vision for the park. (Sam Neubauer for I Love the Upper West Side)

Protected bike lanes are coming to Franklin and Quay streets on the Greenpoint-Williamsburg border. (Kevin Duggar for Brooklyn Paper)

Here’s a fun riddle: How do you pay for a MetroCard if no bills are accepted, no coins are accepted, no credit cards are accepted, no debit cards are accepted, no single tickets are given and only exact change is allowed? (ActionKid)

The Broadway-Lafayette station, the closest station to his old home, sported a tribute to David Bowie four years after his death. (Elie Perler for Bowery Boogie)

The New York City Bar Association is calling on Congress to investigate whether William Barr is too politically biased to fulfill his legal obligations as the nation’s attorney general. (Mary Papenfuss for HuffPost)

A new bill from Queens City Council Member Francisco Moya would declare aliens from another planet and replace “alien” and “illegal immigrant” with “noncitizen.” (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Interactive Map: How frequently subway lines and buses are delayed across the city. (Viewing NYC)

What does the mayor have to say about Politico’s “Wasted Potential” series, which shows just how piss poor the city has been at recycling after Mayor de Blasio’s 2015 pledge to reduce the garbage shipped out of the city? “I’ll have more to say on it in the coming weeks as we figure out the next steps of what we have to do.” Basically nothing. (Danielle Muoio for Politico)

The federal government has launched an investigation into the Hunter’s Point Library for possible violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act. (NY1)

With 119 points on their health department inspection, Tyme & Patience Bakery & Grill has the early lead on highest violation of the year. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

After coming right up to the brink, Neir’s Tavern in Woodhaven has a new lease, literally. A handshake deal between landlord and bar owner will extend the bar’s lease five years, which means we could be back in the position again in a few years. The landlord caved after a combination of public pressure from the Mayor de Blasio, Assemblyman Mike Miller, and City Council Member Robert Holden all made their support of Neir’s public and help from the city to get the building up to code. (Carlotta Mohamed for QNS)

When Schneps Media buys a publication, it means journalists get fired. When Schneps Media bought amNewYork, most of the editorial staff was laid off. When Schneps Media bought Metro, they laid off the entire editorial staff without severance and at this point no former editorial staffers from either publication works for amNewYork Metro, the new Schneps Media Frankenstein. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

After buying Metro and laying off their editorial staff without any severance, Victoria Schneps went on vacation in the Poconos for facials and massages. (Victoria Schneps for QNS)

Marie’s Crisis is a New York institution where singing along to the musical theater song being played by the pianists is always encouraged. The name came from a work of Thomas Payne, who died at that address in 1809, American Crisis and the original owner Marie DeMont. (Atlas Obscura)

A harlequin duck, native to the Pacific northwest was spotted in Sheepshead Bay, an exciting find for New York’s bird crowd. An unusually warm winter has extended the birdwatching season past its usual November ending. (Jessica Parks for Brooklyn Paper)

Is the city monitoring and mapping the locations of homeless New Yorkers? that’s the worry behind The Coalition for the Homeless pulling its support for Mayor de Blasio’s homelessness command center after seeing a photo published of the NYPD’s massive surveillance operation. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

I am in love with single story buildings in Manhattan. Manhattan has a tendency to feel like it’s literally overbearing and coming across a single story building is like a quick breath of air. It’s why Adam Friedberg’s Single-Story Project exhibit at the Center for Architecture is so appealing to me. The exhibit is on display through February 29th. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

South Richmond Hill, Queens is mourning Maria Fuertes, the neighborhood’s beloved 92-year-old cat lady who was attacked close to her home and was found dead on the sidewalk. A suspect has been arrested and charged with murder and sex abuse. (Andrea Salcedo for NY Times)

A look back at Kawkab America, America’s first Arabic newspaper, which launched in 1892 in New York. (Mateo Nelson for Bedford + Bowery)

I’ve fallen in love with ActionKid’s video walks around the city. While this may seem trivial now, having video like this is a great document to have of the city in a specific point in time. At the pace the city is changing, even in a few months this same walk could be drastically different. From Long Island City to Bushwick on foot, narrated. (ActionKid)

Book Culture’s majority owner Chris Doeblin is blaming the city marshal seizure of the store on corporate greed, but pretty much everyone else including his business partners and landlord blame his mismanagement. (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

Anassa, Cantina 33, and Shang Kitchen join Eater’s list of the hottest restaurants in Queens. (Eater)

Thanks to reader Zlata for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for December 16, 2019 – The “A Bathroom Grows in Brooklyn” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The NYPD’s secret gang database isn’t going anywhere, the fate of electric bikes and scooters hangs in the balance, the best new restaurants of 2019, & more

Today – Low: 36˚ High: 37˚
Light rain in the evening and overnight.

Late night disruptions are headed to the 7, A, F, J, and Q trains this week. Check the trains before you head out. (Subway Weekender)

From the inspiration wall to the sprinkle pool, a look inside the Museum of Ice Cream, which opened over the weekend. (Alex Mitchell for amNewYork)

Tenants in two Upper East Side NYCHA developments are suing to correct years of neglect and pervasive dysfunction, which were estimated to be at $100 million in 2017. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

A bathroom grows in Bushwick. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper)

The de Blasio administration has reached a deal with homeless advocates and City Council members to require certain developers receiving city funding to set aside 15 percent of their new rental units for homeless New Yorkers. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

Check out the anti-slavery landmark interactive story map from the Landmarks Preservation Commission. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

This one’s worded a little weird. The headline is “areas that weren’t a thing 10 years ago,” and I’d argue that Gowanus or the Brooklyn Navy Yard existed, but they weren’t real estate hot spots. (Michele Petry for StreetEasy)

The NYPD keeps a secret database of somewhere between 17,500 and 37,000 people, called the “Criminal Group Database.” There’s no evidence why you are included or how to get off it. The gang database is the target of the “Erase the Database” campaign, but the new NYPD commissioner and the mayor are both staunch supporters of it. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

A 13-year-old boy was arrested and charged in connection to the fatal stabbing of 18-year-old Barnard student Tessa Majors. The NYPD believes two additional people were involved in the stabbing. (Michael Gold, Jan Ransom and Edgar Sandoval for NY Times)

The sense of safety that Morningside Park, which separates Columbia University from Harlem, has carried is recent years has changed with 20 robberies this year and punctuated with Tessa Majors’ murder. (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

There’s a rumor that an abandoned train car with bullet-proof armor under the Waldorf Astoria was used by FDR to transport his limousine. While Baggage Car 002, the train car in question, wasn’t FDR’s, Track 61 has been used to move presidents and other government officials in and out of the Waldorf from the 30s through 2017. Baggage Car 002 is now at the Danbury Railway Museum. (Adam Thalenfeld for NYC Urbanism)

Photos: Inside the Schitt’s Creek pop-up shop. (Jen Carlson, photos by Scott Lynch for Gothamist

Manhattan’s “bad cops list” has been released. DA Cyrus Vance released the list of NYPD officers with credibility problems in court thanks to a Freedom of Information request from WNYC/Gothamist. (George Joseph for Gothamist)

The Department of Transportation is turning to a new tactic with a series of Vision Zero ads targeting drivers: shame. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Photos: More from the inside of the Museum of Ice Cream. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

Jazmine Headley reached a $625,000 settlement with the city for the “formative incident of trauma” when her child was ripped from her during an arrest inside a assistance center. She was arrested for sitting on the floor and spend four nights in Rikers Island. Her arrest was caught on video and went viral. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The city’s struggling actors have a new side hustle. Say goodbye to actor-waiters and say hello to actor-spin instructors. (Jae Thomas for Bedford + Bowery)

Governor Cuomo has a bill to legalize electric bikes and scooters, but there is no sign that he will sign it. (Zack Finn for NY1)

A look at the gossip inside the Gambino crime family, following the murder to the reputed underboss Francesco Cali in March. (Nicole Hong for NY Times)

NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea and Mayor Bill de Blasio say the NYPD’s arrest rate is “high” for hate crimes. The number is 42%. (Samir Khurshid for Gotham Gazette)

Governor Cuomo is looking to prevent people from getting a New York gun license if they have committed a serious crime in another state, including misdemeanors like forcible touching and other sex offenses. This is the first public proposal that will be outlined in his 2020 state of the state speech. (amNewYork)

The MTA rolled out its first all-electric articulated bus on Sunday, one of a new fleet that is part of the agency’s plan to shift away from diesel-powered buses in the years ahead. Articulated buses are double the length of a normal bus. (Gabe Herman for amNewYork)

The best new restaurants of 2019. (The Infatuation)

The Briefly for December 6, 2019 – The “Your New Year’s Wishes Will Become Literal Trash” Weekend Edition

In today’s daily NYC digest: The weekend’s subway disruptions, coffee rat, Gambino family mobsters were caught for racketeering, the best unsing restaurants, and more

This weekend’s subways are a mess of fun, including a few suspensions. Better check before you go if you’re along the 4, 5, A, E, J, N, Q, and R trains. (Lance for Subway Weekender)

The owners of Luna Park in Coney Island are raising the rent on the independently owned businesses on the Riegelmann Boardwalk by 500% on January 1. On top of the rent, they also take 10% of the sales as well. It’s a greedy move by the largest lease-holder in Coney Island, who tried to evict all the businesses on the boardwalk in 2010. (Rose Adams for Brooklyn Paper)

The LinkNYC kiosks were supposed to by “a critical step toward a more equal, open, and connected city,” according to the mayor. Instead, they’re digital billboards, an additional form of surveillance, magnets for controversy, and of the 7,500 that were to be installed, only 1,774 are in operation. With less than 25% of the promised numbers actually delivered, they have done little to address the digital divide in the city. (Annie Correal for NY Times)

Spend a Sunday with Cheslie Kryst, Miss USA. (Tammy La Gorce for NY Times)

Your wishes for 2020 can become literal trash less than an hour into the new year. If you want to see your hopes and dreams end up in the sewer, you can submit a new year wish to be included on Times Square confetti in-person or online. (Adam Goldman for Time Out)

Is the MTA’s “Rockaway Parkway Station” an abbreviation or an amazing typo? (@clauirizarry)

Holiday windows in NYC you won’t want to miss. (Shaye Weaver for amNewYork)

Do you need to be reminded that fishing in the Gowanus Canal, a waterway whose water was nicknamed “Black Mayo,” is a bad idea? The answer is a surprising “yes,” because the city is adding more signs reminding people of the Superfund status of the canal. (Scott Unman for Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

The city’s 421-a tax abatement program was meant to spur development and make home-owning less of a financial burden by temporarily lowering real estate tax bills, but that temporary financial relief is exactly that. Only temporary. (Stefanos Chen for NY Times)

Real estate tax is tricky to begin with. On average Bronx and Staten Island homeowners have lower home values, but pay a higher percentage of the value of their homes compared to other boroughs. There are four classes of property that are all taxed differently and assessments vary. Reform is on the agenda for 2020. (Ethan Geringer-Sameth for Gotham Gazette)

Meet Lauren Ashcraft, the 30-year-old democrat socialist challenging U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney for her seat in Congress. (Victoria Merlino for Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

“Jagged Little Pill” on Broadway is a Times Critic’s Pick. (Jesse Green for NY Times)

You might see headlines about how Di Fara Pizza will “deliver” its pizza for the first time. While it’s technically true, they are working with a company that ships food through the mail rather than locally. While it’s a fun gimmick to say that you can get a pizza from Di Fara “delivered” to your friend in Seattle, it’s also not the delivery you were looking for. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

Who are the people clamoring for Blockbuster Video merchandise in 2019? Well, a pop-up on Soho is here for them to get their fix of a doomed business from the 90s. (Untapped New York)

The Sanitation Department have select the garbage cans of tomorrow, and they look like garbage cans. The cans of tomorrow will be seen on Fifth Ave near 90th St first before implemented more widely across the city. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

A Target is coming to Times Square and it’s expected to open in 2022. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

The Kellogg’s NYC near Union Square, where for some reason you could get a bowl of cereal for $1.50, is closed. Miraculously, it was open for nearly two years. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

Where to ice skate in the city. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Mayor de Blasio’s homeless relocation program has been under investigation since February for placing families in unsafe living conditions outside city limits. Newark is suing NYC in federal court for moving homeless families into Newark slums. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork)

The NYPD has more tasers than ever, and it seems like they’re trigger-happy to use those tasers on people of color and the “emotionally disturbed” based on four years of complaints about improper use. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Today marks the release of the third season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. What would her classic-six apartment on Riverside Drive be worth today? (Emily McDonald for StreetEasy)

The filming locations of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Photos: The Dyker Heights Christmas lights. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

An explosion at an Amtrak facility in the Bronx has left one person dead and two people with minor injuries, according to the FDNY. (Elizabeth Kim and Andy Mai for Gothamist)

Congrats to everyone who posted photos of a viral milkshake to Instagram, you’ve participated in the dumbest food trend of the decade. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

Okay, so now Coffee Rat is now a thing. Great. (Ben Kayas for Gothamist)

Are there still Gambino mobsters out there? Yes, because 12 of them, including their boss Andrew Campos, were arrested on racketeering and loan sharking charges on Thursday. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Are you one of the 50,000 whose late fees to the New York Public Library were referred to a collections agency? (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

Take a deep breath. There have been no reported Mandarin Duck sightings in a while and some pessimists have feared the worst. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Under their new contract, bus and subway workers would get a roughly 10% raise over the next four years. (Vincent Barone for amNewYork)

Great New Year’s Eve restaurants that don’t require a tasting menu. (The Infatuation)

The ten best unsung restaurants from the Times’ Hungry City columnist. (Ligaya Michan for NY Times)