The Briefly for January 24, 2020 – The Weekend “Train Daddy Andy Byford Quit His Job” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: A bed bug shuts down a subway station, e-bike legalization is on the horizon, cashless stores are a thing of the past, the best hot chocolate and more

Today – Low: 37˚ High: 49˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.
This weekend – Low: 36˚ High: 51˚

A headline that cuts right to the bone: Millennials Love Zillow Because They’ll Never Own a Home. (Angela Lashbrook for OneZero)

How many bed bugs does it take to shut down and evacuate a subway station? One. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The Stonewall Democratic Club of New York City endorsed Elizabeth Warren for president. (Matt Tracy for Gay City News)

A list of the “absolute best” hot chocolate in the city, with L.A. Burdick at the top of the list. (Leah Koenig for Grub Street)

Say farewell, Train Daddy has left the city. Andy Byford has quit as the president of New York City Transit. (Christina Goldbaum and Emma G. Fitzsimmons for NY Times)

In two years on the job, Andy Byford actually seemed to be doing good work. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

Why Andy, why? The likely reason we’re being left behind is the impending MTA restructuring. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

I don’t think there’s any truth that Byford couldn’t get along with me” -Governor Cuomo, who almost 100% had trouble getting along with Andy Byford. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

Will the MTA’s progress be delayed because of Byford’s departure? According to City Councilmember Joe Borelli, “Unfortunately, we lost the good guy and we’re stuck with Andrew.” (Gloria Pazmino for NY 1)

Limited edition ‘Star Trek: Picard’ MetroCards are available at the 14th St and 7th Ave on the 1/2/3, 28th St and 7th Ave on the 1, 57th St and 6th Ave on the F, 42nd St at Union Square on the 4/5/6/L/N/Q/R/W, and 28th and Broadway on the R/W. The MetroCards will be available for the next three weeks. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

A preview of the new Hayden Planetarium space show Worlds Beyond Earth, narrated by Lupita Nyong’o. (Jennifer Vanasco for Gothamist)

What’s going to replace Fat Baby on Rivington? Who knows, because the replacement has already been evicted. If you’ve got $23,000 a month, it could be yours. (Bowery Boogie)

Governor Cuomo will push the state’s legislature to pass his electric bike and scooter legalization bill next week, with April 1 being the worst case scenario. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

The comments about pushing the legalization came when talking criticizing the de Blasio administration’s “arbitrary” enforcement of the ban with “no uniformity.” Where he sees no leadership from Mayor de Blasio, he intends to create it himself. (Gresh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Cashless stores are a thing of the past. The City Council passed a ban on cashless stores on Thursday, citing that a cash-free business is discriminating against consumers who aren’t in a position to have a back banking you. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

Anyone Comics in Crown Heights is hosting a 24-hour comic book creation marathon on February 1.

According to a new study, the two most livable neighborhoods in the city are Battery Park and Brooklyn Heights. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Five sights that show how much lower Manhattan has changed. (Jane Margolies for NY Times)

Fairway filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will sell off five stores to complete a sale to the company that operates ShopRite and Gourmet Garage. The stores it will sell off are the Upper West Side, Upper East Side, Chelsea, Harlem and Kips Bay. (Chris Crowley is Grub Street)

Mean Girls: The Musical is becoming a movie. Mean Girls: The Movie: The Musical: The Movie: The Book, coming to theaters soon? (Adam Feldman for Time Out)

Governor Cuomo’s $2 billion AirTrain to LaGuardia has ulterior motives: more overall parking. (Eve Kessler for Streetsblog)

The Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama are coming to the Brooklyn Museum on August 27 and will be there through October 24. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

Six of the oldest cars on the Upper West Side. (David Cunningham for I Love the Upper West Side)

Seven years ago, Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz announced Brooklyn would gets its own friendship arch as a gift from the Chinese government to be placed to welcome people to Brooklyn’s Chinatown. After years of planning and announcements, the project appears to be dead. (Yoav Gonan for The City)

Op/Ed: The argument against rezoning Soho/Noho to allow more affordable housing to be built is an argument that recognizes when the city talks about rezoning for affordable housing, they also rezone for super-luxury apartment buildings. (Andrew Berman for GVSHP)

This Sunday is Australia Day, here are 11 ways to celebrate. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

Chopt is buying Dos Toros. The new owners are keeping the restaurant chains separate, but they will share a loyalty program. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

Congrats to ActionKid on his silver YouTube play button, celebrating 100,000 subscribers. He celebrated by taking a sunrise walk with his new plaque into Manhattan. (ActionKid)

Luxury condo prices are at their lowest levels since 2013, hitting $3,816,835, and the surplus of unsold luxury apartments is still high. Over 25% of Manhattan’s luxury apartments are sitting empty. (Valeri Ricciulli for Curbed)

Photos: For the last few days, a Bald Eagle has been seen in Riverside Park. (D. Bruce Yolton for Urban Hawks)

How John Mulaney spends his Sundays. (Paige Darrah for NY Times)

21 restaurants ideal for solo diners. (Diana Hubbell for Eater)

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 January 6, 2020 – The “Y2K Bug Arrives in NYC 20 Years Late” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The state’s new elevator safety law, a new minimum wage for (some) tipped workers, a Times Square institution closed, Brooklyn’s hottest restaurants, & more

Today – Low: 33˚ High: 46˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.

New York is the latest state to enact a state-wide elevator safety law, calling for state oversight of the elevator industry, establishing standards for elevator contractors, mechanics, and inspectors. Anyone think it’s weird this didn’t already exist? (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

It’s hard not to make Y2K jokes when the city’s parking meters stopped accepting credit cards on January 1, 2020. This is the second time in a year that a city’s system has malfunctioned as a result of a lack up upgrading software. (BenYakas for Gothamist)

Speaking of parking tickets, Corey Johnson is proposing a “day fine” system, which is common in Europe. Instead of a fixed fee, which unfairly burdens low-income people, fines would be representative of a percentage of a person’s daily income. (Ben Brachfeld for Gothamist)

Governor Cuomo vetoed the Securing Wages Earned Against Theft bill that would have allowed employees to freeze the assets of their employer while a wage theft case is pending. (Max Parrot for QNS)

Meet Josh and Benny Safdie, the directing duo behind Uncut Gems. (Alex Mitchell for amNewYork)

Did you know there’s a secret H subway train? It was renamed to the Rockaway Park Shuttle in 1993, but it’s still out there if you look carefully. (Tribeca Citizen)

12 new public art installations not to miss in January. (Michelle Young for Untapped Cities)

The mayor’s reaction to multiple deaths on Third Avenue in Brooklyn is to lower the speed limit from 30mph to 25mph. Lowering the speed limit without enforcement is akin to doing nothing, so the mayor has also promised a step up in enforcement. (Paula Katinas for The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

Chepe, the Nevins Street raccoon was captured. He’ll be living out his days known as Chepe, the Prospect Park raccoon. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

The state has a new minimum wage law for tipped workers, which doesn’t include restaurant or bar workers. (Ryan Sutton for Eater)

A look at the city’s new bail reforms from inside Manhattan’s criminal court. (Beth Fertig for Gothamist)

A deep look at why some parents are freaking out about the city’s potential scrapping of the Gifted and Talented program. (Emily Shwake for Gothamist)

Photos: Inside The Deco, Midtown West’s new food hall. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

The 13-year-old arrested in connection with Tessa Majors’s murder was denied a pre-trial release. and will remain in custody while awaiting the trial. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

Times Square features the ridiculous version of everything. $30 Domino’s pizzas. A Red Lobster. And the planned TSX hotel will include an outdoor stage and ball drop suites. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Say farewell to the last of the “meat honkeytonks” in Times Square, Tad’s Steaks. (Serena Dai for Eater)

The Queens Public Library on the first floor of One Court Square will be closing at the end of the month. The library’s been in that location since 1989. If you remember, the building was supposed to become Amazon’s temporary office while their Long Island City campus was built, but since the deal fell through the developer of the building is making other plans. The library is looking for a new home. (Allie Griffin for LIC Post)

A dozen illuminated seesaws are coming to Broadway today (Monday) between 37th and 38th as part of the installation “Impulse.” The seesaws will create light and make music as well. Adding an installation in that spot is an annual tradition. Last year’s installation was an illuminated tunnel you could walk through that made sounds as people walked through it. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

New York is a city of signs, but of very few sign-painters. Travis Fitzsimmons of Prospect Lefferts Gardens makes hand-painted signs whose simplicity and style catch eyes. (Ben Verde for Brooklyn Paper)

Pizza Paradise, the nondescript and honestly sub-par pizza place in Flatiron, holds a secret. Inside is also Taste of Persia, which will be closing at the end of the month due to being told to close by the new owners. Owner Said Pourkay is looking for a new space. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

The Hells Angels’ supporters used to claim the block that housed their clubhouse on E 3rd was the safest block in the city. Some unknown gunmen tested that theory at their new clubhouse in Throggs Neck late on Thursday night. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Video: A look inside Joe’s Shanghai legendary soup dumplings. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

The process hasn’t officially begun, but parents in Queens are organizing against desegregating schools in Kew Gardens, Forest Hills, Rego Park, and Jamaica. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

The Grand Street bike lane in Brooklyn is being upgraded today to physically separate cyclists from moving traffic and prevent drivers from parking in the bike lane. (Julianne Cuba for Streetsblog)

It’s the most mulch-iest time of year. (EV Grieve)

Fairway Market is filing for bankruptcy again. (David Cunningham for I Love the Upper West Side)

The city showed its support for the Jewish community over the weekend with a nearly 20,000 person march across the Brooklyn Bridge into Manhattan. (Christina Goldbaum and Matthew Sedacca for NY Times)

Photos: Inside the new East Village Trader Joe’s. (Gabe Herman for amNewYork)

A Chinatown bus with a station on Canal Street was involved in a horrific traffic accident early Sunday morning in Southwest Pennsylvania that killed five and injured sixty. (Bowery Boogie)

How can you make finding an apartment even less fun than it already is? Add Excel and decision matrices. (Kim Velsey for NY Times)

You’ve got all week to prepare yourself. This weekend is The No Pants Subway Ride. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

In another depressing blow to sources of local news, amNewYork and Metro will be combining into one newspaper under the Schneps Media banner. It seems like Metro’s website will be eaten by amNewYork’s, which has been increasing filled using Associated Press stories instead of local reporters. The announcement doesn’t include the number of layoffs that will be involved. (amNewYork)

The hottest restaurants in Brooklyn for January. (Eater)