The Briefly for December 23, 2019 – The “Sitting Around the Apartment, Staring at Your Family” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The two worst hours to drive in the city, the world’s largest gingerbread village, tour a $30 million apartment, a $5,000 cocktail, and more

Today – Low: 35˚ High: 50˚
Clear throughout the day.

Gramercy Park will open to the public on Christmas Eve for one hour between 6 and 7pm. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

A $1,550 coffee can, a $150 meal for a child, a home decorated for only $50,000. These are the holiday deals for New York’s obscenely rich. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

A $5000 cocktail at The Baccarat. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

Okay, you’ve got family in town this week? Here are some suggestions on what to do with them instead of staring at each other inside your apartment. (Meredith Craig de Pietro for Brooklyn Based)

Christmas day activities for anyone not into Christmas. (Sara Lewin Lebwohl for I Love the Upper West Side)

More Christmas day activities. (Rebecca Fishbein for 6sqft)

Photos: Brooklyn’s largest Hanukkah menorah’s night one celebration. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork)

It’s the record-holder of the Guinness World Records for largest gingerbread village, with 800 pounds of candy, 600 pounds of gingerbread dough, and 2,300 pounds of royal icing. (Stephanie Simon for NY1)

AAA declared Thursday between 4:15pm and 6:15pm the absolute worst time to drive in the city with traffic 2.7x the usual amount. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

The population in Downtown Brooklyn is expected to double in the 2020s. The future of the neighborhood, as envisioned by Downtown Brooklyn Partnership could include protected bike lanes, a mix of some of the most pedestrian-friendly features the city has to offer between 14th St’s busway and Times Square’s pedestrian plazas. (Benjamin Schneider for The City)

Advocates want more New York City school staff to be better educated in how to guide undocumented high school seniors through Dream Act application process. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork)

A federal judge on Thursday rejected a motion from ICE officials to dismiss a New York lawsuit challenging the federal agency over courthouse arrests. The judge ruled that ICE agents should not be allowed to make arrests while witnesses or parties are coming in and out of court proceedings. (Stephen Rex Brown and Leonard Greene for NY Daily News)

We’ve got a new entry into the 100+ point violation club in the weekly list of restaurants ordered closed by the Department of Health. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Parents are accusing the two out of 28 yeshivas that were reported as providing the minimum secular educations of making superficial changes when administrators knew about the inspections in advance, possibly making the already embarrassing report even worse. How bad can it get? Five of the 28 schools inspected offered zero math or English classes at all. (Jessica Gould and Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

One of the Mob Wives was arrested? Quelle surprise! (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

Want some good news? Here’s a story about a firefighter that saved and adopted a kitten. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

Apartment Porn: Take a tour of a $30 million Park Ave penthouse with a rooftop pool, 14-foot ceilings, and a bathtub with a view. (Architectural Digest)

2019 was not a memorable year for sports in New York. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork)

Please meet Elizabeth Warrhen, a lost rooster found in Park Slope trying to root atop an inflatable Santa. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

D’ussé Palooza went from a basement party in Harlem thrown by two unemployed friends to 9,000 revelers at the Barclays Center, sponsored by Jay-Z and a half-million dollar budget in seven years with a plan to expand globally. (Aaron Randle for NY Times)

“Why not use drones to do building inspections?” is a perfectly good question to ask. Installing a sidewalk shed and scaffolding is an expensive, time consuming and may contribute to why some building owners don’t get it done. So what’s stopping it from happening? There’s a 1948 law that requires that all aircraft take off and land in a location designated for flight by the Port Authority. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork)

2019 has been “a difficult and challenging year under Vision Zero,” according to the city’s transportation commissioner, and the end of the year isn’t letting up. In three days drivers killed six pedestrians in Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan, bringing the death toll on city streets to 119 this year, topping last year’s 110. (Christina Goldbaum for NY Times)

Are you ready for the Brooklyn version of High Fidelity? (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

A vigil for the five people killed by drivers on 3rd Ave in Brooklyn was held, calling for the mayor to not wait another year or for another vigil to take action to make 3rd Ave safer for everyone. (Julianne Cuba for Streetsblog)

A detective involved in the Tessa Majors stabbing investigation, Wilfredo Acevedo, has been sued multiple times for allegations that include withholding exculpatory evidence and making false accusations. He’s already facing scrutiny for interrogating a thirteen-year-old suspect with no attorney present. He also has three disciplinary findings from the NYPD. (George Joseph for Gothamist)

The Josephine Shaw Lowell Fountain in Bryant Park is never turned off, which makes a beautiful ice sculpture every time the temperature goes below freezing. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

A Bronx soccer stadium may be closer than we think, despite neighborhood opposition. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

What do you do when the leader of a gang is already in prison? Howard Smith is accused of being the leader of the Brick Squad gang, giving orders through coded phone calls from prison. (Nicole Hong for NY Times)

Despite the city-wide reduction in chain stores, Dunkin’ and MetroPCS saw a booming 2019. Dunkin’ is the city’s largest chain with 636 stores, followed by MetroPCS with 468. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

If you love sushi omakases and hate having money, there are at least 10 sushi omakases that are over $300 before tax or drinks. (Ryan Sutton for Eater)

Where to go when you’ve eaten “everywhere” in Soho. (The Infatuation)

The Briefly for December 19, 2019 – The “Here Come Governor Cuomo’s Subway Cops” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Mayor de Blasio interfered with a report on the schools’ yeshivas, this year’s most checked out books, the South Bronx is not SoBro, and more

Today – Low: 24˚ High: 28˚
Clear throughout the day.

The woman whose instagram posts inside the liana’s enclosure at the Bronx Zoo seemed to heave no fear, except of showing up at court. She no-showed her court date last week and a bench warrant has been issued for her arrest. (NY1)

Non-binary New Yorkers will no longer be labeled as male or female on their death certificates and can instead have an X. The city has offered an intersex designation for birth certificates since 2016 and a nonbinary X since 2018. (Brooklyn Eagle)

The MTA board, controlled but he governor, approved the governor’s proposal of hiring 500 new police officers to patrol subways and buses, costing $249 million in the next four years. The three board nominees appointed by Mayor de Blasio voted against the measure. (Vincent Barone for amNewYork)

Misdemeanors in the city’s public transit system peaked in 2009, then declined, and have since been holding fairly steady, with some minor fluctuations, since 2012. Experts say Governor Cuomo’s claims that misdemeanors are up 11% is based on incomplete data. (Dana Rubenstein for Politico)

Photos: Inside Gramercy Typewriter, one of the city’s last typewriter stores. (Nicole Saraniero for Untapped New York)

The #1 book checked out of the NYPL this year was Becoming by Michelle Obama. Fine out the rest of the top ten and what was popular in each borough. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Stonewall House, New York City’s first affordable LGBT-friendly senior housing complex, is now open in Fort Greene. (Alexandra Alex for 6sqft)

The city’s 29th bicyclist in 2019 killed by a driver is Dr. Daniel J. Cammerman, a doctor at Mount Sinai Health System on the Upper East Side. The Upper East Side is a particularly dangerous place for cyclists. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork)

The NYPD have begun testifying in the juvenile court case of the 13-year-old accused of stabbing Tessa Majors to death. (JB Nicholas for Gothamist)

NYC’s 15 most iconic modern buildings. (Amy Plitt for Curbed)

Chase, Joe Coffee, and By CHLOE, the businesses in the location of the former Union Square Coffee Shop, are now open. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

So now we all know what a snow squall is. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Okay, but why did everyone in the city get a notification about the squall? The National Weather Service added squalls to their list of weather threats worthy of notifications in January of 2018. Wednesdays pair of notifications were the second and third ever to be issued in the city. (Ed Shanahan for NY Times)

Photos: One upside to freezing temperatures is the look of the plants at the New York Botanical Garden wearing icicles like jewelry. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

The owners of the building where Erica Tishman was killed by falling debris on 49th St were fined for failure to maintain the building’s facade in October of 2018 and April of this year, which identified falling hazards for pedestrians. The building got approval to begin masonry work to repair the facade last month. Now that someone was killed as a result of their delays, repairs appear to have begun. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

The city’s small claims court cases have a new upper limit of $10,000, up from $5,000. (Allie Griffin for LIC Post)

Stop trying to rebrand the South Bronx as SoBro. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

Two-ways tolls are coming back to the Verrazzano. Rolled up into the $1.4 trillion government spending bill is changing the bridge’s one way $19.00 toll to an each-way $9.50 toll. Drivers re-route their trips to avoid tolls, making the East-bound direction of Staten Island more congested than necessary as a result. The bill is headed to the senate, where it’s expected to pass. (Paula Katinas for The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

The Nevins Street Subway Raccoon was spotted on Tuesday night. What does this little scamp want? Probably the same as the rest of us on the subway, to be left alone. Trash panda-related subway delays have doubled in 2019, up to 11 total. (Claire Lampen for Gothamist)

A history of the Central Park carousel. (Patricia Youngquist for I Love the Upper West Side)

Mayor de Blasio delayed a report about the investigation into if private yeshivas in New York City were not providing their students with an adequate education as long as possible for his own political gain. A report from the DOE’s Special Commissioner of Investigation on the situation states the inquiry itself was delayed at least a year in order to drum up support for mayoral control of city schools. It’s been four years since the inquiry was supposed to start and no report has been produced. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

Mayor de Blasio didn’t break the law, but he did interfere with his own Department of Education’s probe into the yeshivas. Now the mayor’s office sounds like an echo of the president, immediately issuing the statement “There’s no ‘there’ there, as evidenced by the finding of no wrongdoing.” (Eliza Shapiro and Jeffrey C. Mays for NY Times)

Jersey City has joined the federal lawsuit against the de Blasio administration for its placement of homeless families from the city in apartments controlled by slumlords in New Jersey. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork)

OMNY has arrived in the Bronx, starting with the E138 St, Grand Concourse, and 149th St stations. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

The ten best dishes inside the new Essex Crossing. (Robert Sietsema for Eater)

The Briefly for November 7, 2019 – The “Lubing Up the Cube in Astor Place” Edition

A list of lying NYPD officers, low voter turnout in this year’s elections, no one wants to live in Turtle Bay, the best coffee shop in the US, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest

The sweet spot for rent in the city might be $2,700 and four other things you need to know about the city’s real estate market. (StreetEasy)

The life, death, and rebirth of the Orchard Street pedestrian mall, the only street in the city that closes on Sundays to become a pedestrian mall. (Bowery Boogie)

A look at how gentrification has changed Fort Greene. (NY Times)

How does the cube in Astor Place stay able to spin? It gets lubed. (EV Grieve)

Commercial rent control may be how the city fights the retail vacancy crisis. (Gothamist)

Death certificates for overdoses in New York state must state a type of opioid thanks to a bill signed into law by Governor Cuomo on Tuesday. (amNewYork)

“The Seated IV” from Wangechi Mutu, which sits outside the Met as part of the facade, will be on display until June, instead of coming to an end in January. (NY Times)

Gothamist/WNYC has been fighting to get the secret list that each of the five borough District Attorneys maintains of cops who have been accused of dishonesty. Thanks to a successful Freedom of Information request, a three-page list of liar cops from the Brooklyn DA’s office was released on Wednesday. (Gothamist)

Who wants to live in Turtle Bay or Midtown? That question might be harder to answer than you think. Of the entire city, those are the two neighborhoods with the most real estate price drops in October. (amNewYork)

The best restaurants in Inwood. (The Infatuation)

Not much of the city voted on Tuesday. Only 13.9% of registered voters actually voted. While early voting was supposed to make voting easier, the locations were limited to 33 across the entire city. The mayor is hoping to increase that number to 100 for the 2020 election. (amNewYork)

James O’Neill is leaving his commissionership with the NYPD for a security job at Visa. (Patch)

The best coffee shop in the USA is Sey Coffee on Grattan Street in Bushwick, according to Food & Wine magazine. (Patch)

The definitive guide to the Hudson Yards development boom. (Curbed)

A $50 million triplex penthouse on Central Park West, once belonging to Demi Moore and Bruce Willis, can be yours if you’ve got $50 million lying around. (StreetEasy)

The president will return to the city that hates him to kick off Monday’s Veteran’s Day parade in Manhattan. This just went from parade to shit show. (amNewYork)

Where to go for affogato, the city’s newest must-try dessert, vanilla gelato with espresso poured over it. (Eater)

The Long Island City Clock Tower is going to go through a restoration that will start and end next year. (LIC Post)

120,000 pounds of clothes were collected for donation at the start of the NYC Marathon, with those clothes going to Goodwill. Since 2012 a million pounds have been collected and donated. (amNewYork)

Once the L train’s signal updates are complete, the M train is the next line to be upgraded and inconvenienced by late-night service disruptions while they’re being installed. (amNewYork)

Billy Eichner remains the only person I want one of the hundreds that call Met Life Stadium home. (Gothamist)

The best restaurants in Sunnyside and Woodside. (Grub Street)